IDEASCALE BLOG

Tag: ideation

How Design Thinking Complements Crowdsourced Innovation

Design Thinking Complements Crowdsourced InnovationIn my double role as an innovation architect at IdeaScale and a consultant for innovation management, I rely on a variety of methods to set my clients up for success. Combining methods is one of the ways I make sure they make the most out of their innovation efforts. In this post, I’d like to talk about how design thinking complements crowdsourced innovation.

Design thinking is a well-known, highly-effective and enjoyable method that encourages people to open their minds and take a different approach to problem solving. Not only does it bring together individuals that have different views on a problem, but it also allows for communication at eye level. I don’t think I need to point out the obvious parallels to crowdsourcing here, do I? The two methods are a natural fit.

Design thinking is a six-phase process that puts people in focus. The first three phases are all about gaining a thorough understanding of the problem and the target customer. The other three phases are dedicated to working on solutions. Design Thinking methods can be used at any point in a process of open innovation. Let me walk you through how this might look.

Define: Asking the right questions is crucial to finding valuable ideas. In design thinking, the first phase is dedicated to defining a suitable problem statement to set the project up for success. IdeaScale can be used here to find issues people would like to work on. Run a campaign and ask employees or customers for input.

Research: This phase is about conducting personal interviews and external research (studies etc). Its goal is to dive into your customers’ world and find out what they do, think and feel. Paired with online discussions on the platform, this gives you valuable insights into the needs of your target customers.

Synthesis: Having gathered a large amount of information, you now need to identify the most important insights. On the platform, focus on ideas that address exactly those points and move them to the next phase. Or use the information you’ve gathered to reframe your problem statement.

NOTE: What makes design thinking so universally applicable is the fact that you are never tied to the process. It makes sense to follow it from A to Z to begin with, but you’re free to jump back or ahead any time.

Ideation: Even though you have been collecting ideas all along, this is the moment to stir up the crowd again. You now have a much clearer understanding of the problem and the people you want to solve it for. Communicate exactly what you want the crowd to help you with and look forward to fantastic ideas!

Prototyping: This is where ideas become reality. There are different ways to use IdeaScale at this point in the process. One way is to use the Build Team stage and have people volunteer to build prototypes. Then come together in a workshop and provide materials for the teams to build them.

Testing: Finally, you have some prototypes! Now it’s time to test them. Do it live or on the platform – involve the crowd an ask for feedback. If you want to you can even start a whole new round of idea collection to develop your prototype and enrich it with new functions.

These are just a few ideas – there are numerous ways in which you can combine the methods. Open up and give people the chance to contribute – what you will learn and achieve is more valuable than you could ever expect.

The Stages of Innovation. Where Are You and What Does That Mean for You?

A brilliant innovation starts with a single step.

How does innovation happen? That’s a question that bedevils even the most creative of companies. Innovation is necessary for corporate survival, but where is your company in the five stages of innovation? And what’s entailed in each of them?

Step 1: Ideas

The good news is that the first step is the easiest. Cultivating a rich, deep base of creativity is a relatively simple step; ask your customers, ask your employees, and look hard at your industry. But remember that you have to bring your ideas down to earth, and figure out how to implement them.  Work to filter ideas so the best, most thoughtful ones take priority.

Step 2: Advocacy

Once you have some ideas that you think will work, those ideas need support. And even the greatest innovators can have a crisis of faith. In 1901, after the failure of their test glider, Wilbur Wright told his brother Orville that “Not within a thousand years would man ever fly.” It can be tough to fight institutional inertia or tradition. That said, though, there’s something to be said for refinement; any idea needs to be looked at by stakeholders across the board for feedback. But remember to ask what’s next the entire time. Ideas need to become tangible in some way, and often need refinement.

Step 3: Experimentation

No brilliant idea emerges fully formed from the meeting or the laboratory. Robert Heinlein, the famous science fiction author, famously claimed he never wrote a second draft unless an editor told him to, but keep in mind: An editor often told him to rewrite something. An idea is rarely so brilliant it can’t be made better, so try it out. Run a pilot test. Create a prototype and put it through its pace. Let people handle your idea and offer suggestions.

Teamwork and refinement make innovation better.

Step 4: Commercialization

Once you have an idea of how your refined idea will work and who wants it, the next question is: How do you turn your prototype into a product? That can be tougher than you think. Ever wonder how long Apple worked on the iPad? Four years? Ten years? Try since 1983; the iPad has its roots in an unusual product Apple experimented with that attached an LCD screen to a tabletop phone. But there just wasn’t a market for the idea, as cool as it was, so Apple kept it handy as it innovated elsewhere, and brought the idea to market when it was ready.

Step 5: Diffusion

This is the step that gets the whole company on board. Now that everything is in place, you and those who worked on the project talk about what it is, how it works, and why it’s important. Think of this step as the dry run to selling your innovation to the wider world. Here’s where you’ll get to try out how to best explain it and show how it makes your industry better.

Innovation is a journey, and even the hardest journey is a little smoother when you have a map. Keep these steps in mind, and if you need more help, join the IdeaScale community.

 

Harnessing Good Thoughts: Innovation Management as a Volunteer Opportunity

innovation management as volunteer opportunityTHE DISHARMONIUS GOOD INTENTIONS OF STAKEHOLDERS

Every nonprofit has them, mountains of well-meaning good ideas from passionate supporters, true believers, and entitled stakeholders.

There’s just so darn many of them. Ideas AND supporters. Ignoring one mean can means losing the other (people leave when they feel they aren’t being listened to), but nonprofits just don’t have the time to give every idea the consideration it deserves. Heck, they can’t even slow down long enough to sort things into buckets of yes, no, and maybe later. There’s just too much to do, too many volunteers to manage…

…hey, waitaminnut!

What if you could harness your volunteers to help you sort all the good ideas? Even better, to HAVE good ideas for you?!? What if it wasn’t any harder than managing any other volunteer opportunity? Sure, someone would need to set it up properly, plan it, provide tools, training, and guidance for success, but you do that all the time already. You know how to do that. You have plans and resources and more online guides for that than you can count.

It’s just changing the goal a little, rotating the volunteer dial from “deliver service” to “improve processes” or even “help set strategic priority.” Crazy? Nope, it’s just common sense.

SHAPING WELL-MEANING SUGGESTIONS INTO HARMONIOUS ACTION

People want to help. They want to buy in. They want to feel like they belong. That they matter. Some are content to show up on a “volunteer day,” but the best want to do more. They have ideas and skills and experience they want to share. They see a way to deliver service more efficiently or be better stewards of resources or stronger allies to your community. They have GREAT ideas. And you know that if you find the best ideas and implement them, not only will it make you stronger as an organization, it will gain you a committed partner. Nothing strengthens the ties that bind like shared success. You want people to buy in like that. Lots of people. Funding follows that kind of commitment.

It’s about harnessing random good intentions and focusing them into collective action in support of a common cause. You set clear goals, provide the right tools and direction, check in and offer guidance every so often, and then celebrate shared success.

You could, in effect, use familiar processes to create volunteer opportunities at a strategic level; you just might need a new tool or two.

This is where managed collaborative innovation comes in. You can partner with supporters in answering difficult questions and meeting tough challenges much the same way you would in rebuilding a community, delivering a hundred meals, or reading a thousand books. With clear goals, a well-defined process, and a lot of teamwork. Some simple examples:

  • Ask your volunteers to develop or improve the training program for new volunteers.
  • Ask your stakeholders to co-create priorities for the upcoming year (or more).
  • Ask local leaders to draft new ways that your services could better serve their communities.
  • Ask your most vocal advocates to present new ideas for fundraising.

Done well, it accomplishes three things at once: 1) harnesses the otherwise wasted resource of good ideas from passionate audiences 2) deepens engagement with those audiences through a sense of shared success, and 3) provides a guiding framework that keeps those ideas firmly aligned with the mission and vision of your ongoing work.

Like any other volunteer opportunity, success is going to depend on how well you set it up, manage it, and engage with your volunteers. It’s not necessarily easy, but it is simple. Done thoughtfully and carefully, it makes good use of a previously untapped self-renewing resource. With clearly stated goals and constraints, well-crafted questions, effective community engagement, user-friendly tools for ideation and collaboration, and transparent evaluation and reporting processes, you can turn the smart ideas of your most passionate supporters into plans ready for collective action.

Nonprofits are among the most resourceful organizations at finding new ways to access previously untapped potential in support of a common cause. Solutions like IdeaScale can provide the tools necessary to take this potential and refine it into both useful, actionable innovation and an increased sense of engagement, inclusion, and commitment.

You already know how to engage a community of volunteer doers, take the next step and learn how to engage a community of volunteer thinkers.

This blog is a guest post by Tim Parsons, COO of 5:00 Films & Media

Incentives for Participation or Incentives for Success? What Works?

incentives for participationIn a fast-paced corporate environment where there are many expectations and a steady stream of work, how (and more importantly) why, would you carve out time to contribute to your company’s new ideation platform?

Recently a customer asked me if I could share some insight as to what type of incentives really work to drive engagement across divisions and companies. This is an extremely common question for new customers looking to ensure that they can justify their investment in an innovation management platform by ensuring good participation volumes. This customer in particular was interested in the impact of career advancement opportunities on participation volume.

It’s a great question because career advancement is known to be an excellent motivator and yet despite the evidenceour recent report showed that only 8% of our customers included “career growth” as one of their explicit incentive offerings.

While extrapolating success simply based on this is a little too messy to create a clean statement of fact, it is worth noting that every one of these respondents indicated that their IdeaScale innovation management program proved value within the first month of existence.

It turns out that successful incentive programs require a flexible, multi-faceted approach. Here’s why: your incentive strategy should be driven by your crowdsourcing objectives. In other words, if your goal is to source high-caliber, implementation-ready ideas then participation volume is simply one of several things you might want to optimize. Given that you may be sourcing different types of solutions, consider also focusing on how your incentives will impact the nature of the participation (e.g. highly detailed and technical, casual and quick or out-of-the-box), the specific type of participation (e.g. voting, commenting, scoring…) and the roles and composition of the participants (experts, front-line employees, customers, etc…).

For more information I recommend an insightful book called “Wiser” by Cass Sunstein and Reid Hastie. The book focuses on how to develop and leverage smart groups, specifically how incentives can lead to best solutions.

One of the most interesting things I learned was how individuals within teams perform better as individuals when incentives are offered for the team as a whole. In other words, if you offer a prize to the team/department from which the best idea comes from, you’ll achieve a few things: 1. The classic extrinsic reward-type motivation, 2. enhanced collaboration via shared objectives, and 3. reduced risk to individuals for stepping outside of groupthink (commonly accepted wisdom) or traditional hierarchy, thus leading to a healthier diversity of input and output.

Regarding the type of career advancement you can actually offer, you might consider creating the opportunity for the idea submitter to continue working on their ideas with flex time. based on the work some professors at the University of Michigan have done called “job crafting” which I wrote a little bit about here, This would be a great signal to all employees that you’re interested in allowing employees to drive positive change within their own roles and based on the job crafting literature, this can have some pretty powerful impacts organizationally and drive continued participation as employees would see the idea platform as a way to drive this process. From the Wiser perspective, by doing this, you’re also helping to inspire participants to share ideas that they are passionate about rather than what they might think management wants to hear and thus increasing the caliber of participation rather than simply volume. You can also find a list of non-monetary rewards to incentivize engagement on our resources page. 

Have you read Wiser or do you have other insights to share on what makes a great incentive program? Let me know [email protected] or on twitter @devinmcintire

This blog post is part of a series authored by IdeaScale employees. It showcases how they’re thinking about crowdsourcing and innovation as part of their daily routine. Feel free to ask questions or make comments.

This post is by Devin Mcintire, Innovation Technology Advisor at IdeaScale

Taming Blue Sky Ideation: Collecting Ideas that are Both Novel and Valuable

Blue Sky IdeationI frequently hear from some clients the desire or need to hold “general” or “blue sky” campaigns. “We don’t want to limit them.” “Anything goes.” “Just submit the idea and we will decide if we can make it happen.”

In two blog entries, I provide guidelines to help you go broad, avoid pitfalls, and collect ideas that are valuable and relevant to your organization.

First, resist the urge to neglect the problem statement. The most common pitfall when running a “general” or “blue sky ideation” campaign is to assume this means you no longer need constraints or a problem statement.

The crowd craves a problem, a puzzle. The absence of a problem does not inspire. It does not tease the mind, or spark creativity.

Constraints, on the other hand, present a puzzle. The puzzle is what drives your crowd to get creative and generate the valuable and novel ideas you seek. Entrepreneurs testify that limited resources are actually the source of their strategic advantage. The startup workstyle, under extreme constraints, demands creativity, and thus drives novelty. Constraints breed creativity.

When you have the temptation to remove all constraints, reframe your thinking to focus on the nature of the constraints you select. High-level constraints, deriving from the mission, vision, or purpose of your organization cast a wide net. Constraints deriving from pre-determined strategies and tactics of your organization result in a more prescriptive campaign.  

My recommendation for building a broad but useful problem statement: draw from your organization’s mission, vision, or purpose. This ensures you’re collecting relevant and useful ideas that are valuable to your organization, while still keeping the scope broad and inclusive.

Consider a city called Skyville.

Mission: To promote a prosperous life for the residents of the city.

Strategy: Revitalize the city center.

Broad problem statement: Our goal is for Skyville to be the greatest place for you to live, work, play and do business.  How can we help you prosper in city of Skyville?

Prescriptive problem statement: To promote prosperity for you and your neighbors, the city revitalization project must match your needs and your vision for our shared city center.  What does a revitalized city center look like to you?

Once you have your problem statement or call to action, it is time to set up a campaign that promotes idea generation. Check back next week for tips on how to help your crowd generate fresh and novel ideas.

This blog post is part of a series authored by IdeaScale employees. It showcases how they’re thinking about crowdsourcing and innovation as part of their daily routine. Feel free to ask questions or make comments.

This post is by Whitney Bernstein, Innovation Architect at IdeaScale

3 Reasons Why Sustainability & Innovation are Related

sustainability-and-innovation-are-relatedIdeaScale cares a great deal about helping people build sustainable business practices. Certainly we believe in sustainable businesses, because they work to minimize any negative impact on their environment when it comes to community, society, the economy, or planet. However, there is another reason that IdeaScale invests in organizations that build sustainable practices… In short, it is because they are more likely to be successful at innovation. But how can we say that sustainability and innovation are related?

In a few different studies by the Harvard Business Review and by Deloitte, researchers found that organizations that were leaders in sustainability were also leaders in innovation (and specifically with sustainability leading the way for innovation). But why would this be so? Well, the researchers pose a few different theories:

Constraints actually build creativity. As much as some organizations complain about limitations and regulations, there’s evidence to support the idea that working within some boundaries actually makes us MORE creative. So if an organization has to meet some sustainability directives, they’re more likely to be inspired by their limitations instead of bound by them.

The premium placed on new ideas. Because sustainability practices rely on fresh ideas to continuously optimize and find efficiencies, generating ideas becomes second nature to all employees. They are far more likely to think up solutions to other problems (foreseen and unforeseen), as well.

Employees begin to see the whole value chain. When looking for efficiencies, you end up thinking beyond your small domain and into the rest of the company, its partners, and procedures. This expansion allows for ideation that is more comprehensive and valuable.

To learn more about the relationship between sustainability and innovation, download our infographic here.

Why Does Sharing Ideas Improve Employee Morale?

fda-ideascaleRecently in the United States there has been focus on why employees are so unhappy, why they have such low morale, and especially why they leave jobs. One of the most often cited reasons is that they feel as though their opinion is unvalued. For the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER), employee retention is especially imperative as their mission is critical to public health. So in 2014 the CDER launched a crowdsourcing program among their employees specifically to combat low morale and create a more highly engaged workforce.

Since the CDER Crowdsourcing Program’s inception, thirteen separate time-limited challenges have been presented to CDER employees, leading to more efficiency, money saved, and increased sense of job involvement and emotional attachment. The CDER heightened the message that employee engagement is valued by providing time-off incentives based on participation or the top strongest ideas, depending on the aim of a particular initiative.

Although the CDER has had some great ideas, increased efficiency, and money saved as a result of this program, perhaps most notably they have noticed a more engaged and positive workforce.

Not only does the crowdsourcing of ideas increase employee morale, it has a ripple effect on the rest of the organization. Senior management is presented with better solutions and more creative insight into what can help improve various aspects of the job. The stress on human resources is somewhat relieved as employees are more likely to want to stick around and generally feel more invested in the organization and furthering the mission. Not only do human resources departments not have to spend as much time replacing unhappy employees who choose to leave their jobs, having increased morale helps to reduce workplace stress and increase employee health. Greater employee engagement and satisfaction also trickles down to have a positive impact on customer satisfaction.

To read more about how the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) is increasing employee morale by engaging their workforce in crowdsourcing, click here to download the recent case study.

Innovation Academy Week 4 – Assess and Implement

Innovation Academy Week 4 – Assess and Implement Welcome to the final week of the Innovation Academy! So far, you’ve learned how to come up with creative ideas, how to build a highly effective team, and how to refine your top ideas and turn them into robust proposals.

This week, you’ll discover the final stage in an innovation project: assessing and implementing. You need to assess your final ideas, make a decision, and then implement the winning solution.

Assess Your Final Ideas 

While it’s great to have tons of innovative ideas, you’ll likely have budget and staff restrictions that require you to narrow your focus and prioritize. As a result, you’ll want to score your ideas based on the following aspects:

  • Value Factors. You’ll want to start off by defining the value factors that matter most in your organization. Then, determine which of your new ideas bring the most value for both your company and your customers based on those criteria. You can use a point system to assign value, and rank the ideas based on resulting scores.
  • Cost Factors. While it would be great to do absolutely everything, your budget probably doesn’t allow that. So, you’ll need to rank your top ideas based on cost. However, don’t make the mistake of only basing it on the investment required. Be sure to include the return on investment as well.
  • Constraint Factors. Finally, you may have other constraints that affect your ability to implement ideas. Some constraints include team member availability, physical location factors, and the need to pilot the idea on a smaller scale before a large rollout. Define all of the constraint factors you face and then rank the ideas accordingly.

Once you assign points in each of these areas, you can total the scores and prioritize the ideas. Then, you’ll know which one or two ideas you can move forward and implement.

Implement Your Ideas 

Surprisingly, implementation is the #1 place that organizations fail. Many companies go through an innovation program, collect ideas, and evaluate and rank them. Then they let the ideas sit and collect dust. This demoralizes your employees and makes future innovation projects less credible.

The two biggest pieces of the implementation stage are engaging the creator of the idea and publicizing the wins that come from executing the new idea. The Western Australia Police found that when the idea creator was involved in enacting the idea, it reinforced the integrity of the process and sped adoption across the agency. In addition, publicizing the many wins the system has created drives additional confidence in the improvement process and encourages more front-line members to suggest innovative ideas.

Don’t be one of the many organizations that fall short in implementation. Once you’ve collected great ideas, rated and ranked them, and received approval, be sure to follow through and execute. It’s the only way to realize the benefits of innovation for your company.

Thank you for completing the Innovation Academy! Now it’s time to implement your plan. If you follow the steps and enact these processes in your organization, you’ll see results that move the needle. For additional inspiration, take a look at case studies specific to your industry.

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5 Ways Crowdsourcing can Help You Maximize Your Non-profit’s Impact

Think crowdsourcing is a small, trendy gimmick? Think again — as of last year the crowdsourcing market generated an estimated $34 billion, much of it for non-profits and fundraising. Crowdsourcing isn’t just for generating cash. It’s also an excellent resource for getting good ideas and developing good ideas into excellent ones. How can crowdsourcing serve as one of your non-profit’s go-to brainstorming tools?

1. Get Input From a Variety of Groups


A homogeneous group of people will usually produce lots of similar ideas. Crowdsourcing offers diversity of people, which in turn produces diversity in ideas.

Crowdsourcing is an ideal way to connect with a variety of demographic groups. In addition to ordinary citizens — each with a variety of ages, languages, backgrounds, educational levels, and abilities — you can reach specialized groups of experts, researchers, businesses, and activists. This diversity assures you a wide range of ideas, plus input on your developing ideas from all sorts of viewpoints.

2. Begin with Strong Brainstorming

Brainstorming tools like crowdsourcing should allow people to enter any and every idea they have, including the most bizarre or outrageous ones. Often, it’s the nuttiest ideas that bake into the best cookies. Some of the ideas come from industry outsiders who naturally think ‘outside the box’ because they haven’t been taught to work inside the box. Other ideas derive from experts of various strengths, educational backgrounds, and skill levels, assuring that some of the ideas are quite well thought-out and relevant to your needs.

3. Evaluate Ideas for Viability

The trouble with all great brainstorming tools is that you end up with so many ideas. It’s time-consuming and tedious to wade through all of the ideas to determine which are worth developing. Plus, sometimes it’s those easiest to bypass that end up being the best of the bunch. Crowdsourcing is an excellent way to see how the general public, as well as those industry insiders, receive the ideas.

4. Refine Good Ideas to Make Those Great Ideas

Sometimes the best ideas come wrapped in craziness. Only after thrashing it about for awhile does it become an excellent innovation.

After ideas are generated and sorted through many diversified perspectives, it’s time to take the best of those ideas and develop them into viable solutions. Again, crowdsourcing is ideal for this purpose. Crowdsourcing can help determine what types of marketing are most effective, what kinds of fundraisers are slated to generate the most revenue, where new sources of funding might be discovered, and much more. Non-profits can utilize crowdsourcing to add to existing ideas, hone and refine rough ideas, and fine-tune good ideas.

5. Spread the Word About Your Non-profit & Your Cause

Another quite natural benefit of crowdsourcing as a brainstorming tool and innovation refinery is that it spreads the word about your organization and the causes you stand for. Choose a platform that offers multiple languages, so that you can reach out to those outside your home country and into other world cultures. Have employees participate in your crowdsourcing efforts to help promote, encourage, and inspire others to become a part of the project and contribute to the innovation process.

Interested in learning more about how crowdsourcing can help you broaden your non-profit’s impact? Download our whitepaper, Crowdsourcing For Non-profits, now!

Innovation Academy Week 3 – Refine Ideas to a Robust Proposal

Innovation Academy Week 3 – Refine Idea to a Robust ProposalWelcome to week three! You’re well on your way to having an effective innovation team. This week, we’ll discuss how to turn the best new ideas into robust proposals that include the necessary components required by your stakeholders.

Refining the Idea

As you move through your innovation process, you’ll be forwarding the most promising new ideas to your innovation project team. There, they will be evaluated and put into a functional form. Within the team, you can then choose the very best ideas and create full, robust proposals for your leadership team to evaluate.

Once you move into the Refine stage, access to project ideas is limited based on role. Only team members can have input on the idea at this stage, and priority is given to team members with experience in the area that the solution addresses. However, even at this stage, you want to make sure you are giving regular updates to your stakeholders and leadership.

You may have a wider group of people who are permitted to view the top ideas and implementation status. If you have a platform with an “idea detail page” or similar area that can allow for viewing but not editing, that’s a great way to keep your stakeholders and leaders up to date without having to send dozens of emails.

You want to ensure transparency while restricting access. Editing should be granted to the innovation team only. Letting your employees, stakeholders, and other participants know how things are going is important, but they don’t need all of the details.

Forming Proposals With the COSTAR Model 

Having a robust proposal means making sure that all key elements are addressed. You don’t want to be put in a situation where you don’t know the answers to common questions. You also don’t want your leadership team asking for data that you forgot to provide. Instead, use the COSTAR model to create a comprehensive proposal.The Enterprise Development Group is the creator of the COSTAR model.

  • C: Customer. The goal of the first step is to define who the target customer is and the unmet needs they have. Clearly defining the customer will help you articulate the need and prove the value of the idea.
  • O: Opportunity. In this step, you’re sharing how this solution provides value for your organization as well as the customer. You may also articulate how the solution is far-reaching and involves more than solving one problem for one group. Maybe it provides a platform that can be used for other customers or a new idea that reduces the cost of manufacturing a widget.
  • S: Solution. In this step, clearly define the solution that you are presenting. Make sure you anticipate questions, including how quickly the solution will be implemented, resources needed and risk mitigation strategies.
  • T: Team. The goal of this step is to clearly define who you need at various stages. Having this clearly explained in the proposal will help ensure approval for staff and funding as implementation continues.
  • A: Advantage. In this step, consider what competitive advantage is created by this new idea. What would it allow you to offer that no one else is offering? Knowing this will help you present your idea as a way to gain ground over competitors.
  • R: Results. Finally, it’s important to be very clear on the results that will come from implementing your idea. You’ll want to describe the results in both qualitative and quantitative ways. What will the return on investment be? How will you measure the new process and determine whether it succeeds or fails?

Using the COSTAR model, along with an executive summary, conclusion, relevant charts, and data, will help you create a robust proposal that covers all the bases. You’ll be able to go into the approval phase knowing that you thought through the possibilities and can confidently answer any questions that are presented.

Once your proposal is approved, it’s time for implementation. Next week will be the last installment of the Innovation Academy, where we’ll discuss how you assess and implement the new idea. If you’re receiving value from this academy, please share the Innovation Academy workbook with a friend. In the meantime, take a look at our Crowdsourcing Best Practices guide for more information about implementing your winning idea!

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