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One of the most important ingredients for creative thinking is diversity. With diversity, there are more varied ideas, suggestions, and ways of thinking. Keeping this at the forefront of your mind when bringing a team together is key to a diverse and creative team. As the leader of a car dealership looking to create a new, effective and unique customer loyalty program it is imperative there is an organizational strategy in place.
The first step is to identify key employees who are star performers and who can help to mentor and prime other employees. As a leader, you will want to find employees who have qualities which “include not only the ability to propose new ideas but also an unwillingness to rely on past successes and a knack for selling novel ideas to a diverse array of constituents” (Chon, Katzenbach, & Vlak 2008, p. 62). As a leader, it is important to allow your team the time and opportunity for experiences and support. Ensuring there are a clear vision and direction (Zenger & Folkman 2009). for the company and sharing with the team(s), this vision will ensure everyone is on the same page. Holding team meetings and also town hall meetings for the overall company would be a great opportunity to share the vision and encourage brainstorming. As Chon, Katzenbach, & Vlak 2008 have discussed, putting innovators in the middle of the organizational chart, where no formal boxes exist…they become “innovation hubs,” with easy access to influencer’s” (p. 68).
Collaboration amongst teams with diverse thinking styles and perspectives can make a difference. Successful leaders often value the difference on the team and encourage employees to give their best thinking, helping to both bridges the diversity of thought in the group so all perspectives are heard. Promoting peer networks will get your team to leave its comfort zone and begin to generate potential ideas (Chon, Katzenback, & Vlak 2008). Completing a mind map to start with the brainstorming process would be key for me as a leader. It can help to visually organize what steps are needed to take to accomplish our goals. It is also a great visual for the teams to understand the direction and allow them the opportunity to ask questions and feel fully involved. The team will go through the stages of design thinking together, inspiration, ideation, implementation, and success. Without diverse thinking, there can be a hindrance to the team and their success.
Encouraging divergent and convergent thinking will help to evaluate potential ideas for the program. Exploring new possibilities and a range of options before selecting the best path forward is the best combination of using these thinking methods. Using this methodology along with mind mapping is an effective strategy to build this loyalty program. Also, I would use the SWOT model. During past projects, I have often used this analysis as it is a useful technique for understanding the strengths and weaknesses, as well as opportunities and threats. Overall with these methods, techniques, and thought processes I feel we will be successful in developing a team with diverse creative thinking styles.
All the best,
Chon, J., Katzenbach, J., & Vlak, G. (2008). Finding and grooming breakthrough innovators. Harvard Business Review, 86(12), 62-69. Retrieved from https://cb.hbsp.harvard.edu/cbmp/pl/66107934/66108…
Zenger, J., & Folkman, J. (2009). Ten fatal flaws that derail leaders. Harvard Business Review, 87(6) 18. Retrieved from https://cb.hbsp.harvard.edu/cbmp/pl/66107934/66107…
lass and Professor Towns,
Bringing an innovative team together requires me to bring energy, vision, and good judgment (Zenger, 2009). I would have to know how to collaborate effectively, take action, foster new ideas and be comfortable with change (Zenger, 2009). My communication skills must be utilized (Zenger,2009). I need to help and develop my staff (Zenger, 2009). Also, I must not be stagnant, and comfortable while I learn new ideas and learn from mistakes (Zenger, 2009).
I would have to find members who are willing to bring forth new ideas . They must be willing to accept change. My team must be motivated to collaborate with a diverse set of ideas. They must understand that they have to work with one another while communicating effectively in order to improve on their ideas or choose the best ideas in a systematic way.
As a manager, I would make sure I pinpoint what the customer preferences are (Cohn, 2008). I must make necessary changes to adhere to the customer rather than sticking with the status quo (Cohn, 2008). I would keep updated on newly presented ideas on a weekly or daily basis. I would communicate effectively which will include encouraging the staff to be communicate openly as well. Conducting weekly meetings with the staff would give an even more opportunity to present ideas that would aim to establish a customer loyalty program. I would encourage feed backs and and feed forwards from the staff. This would help myself improve and make adjustments. Also, the team meetings would have the decide on what ideas would be accepted and which one’ s we would filter out (Cohn, 2008). We would discuss why certain ideas would help more than other ideas.
I would encourage mentors or peer networks as part of the project in order to increase team work which would have the staff collaborate ideas (Cohn, 2008). This would increase the chances of getting everyone involved in the process. I would emphasize that this is a team effort and that the team’s goal the most important aspect as opposed to individual goals. This would strengthen the team and create as much innovative ideas as possible.
I would also emphasize social awareness in order to understand the customers’ needs even more (Cohn, 2008). This would keep us ahead of the competition by satisfying customers in order to keep them and bring in new customers.
In order to lead an effective team, I need to communicate effectively while adding a little charm in order to be persuasive to my staff. I must motivate them. In order to do that I must also stay active and never be stagnant (Cohn, 2008). This would allow me to stay ahead of competition and create new ideas.
Every project should start with a clean slate (Cohn, 2008). Past methods that worked may not be suitable for the future in this ever changing and trendy world we live in. As a manager i must constantly find the problems and then motivate the team to come up with solutions. Communicating and holding staff meetings periodically would help carry out innovative ideas. it is important for me to be an effective manager and lead by example in order for this design thinking to resonate throughout the team. I have to be analytical and understand customer needs with the collaboration of ideas from he team (Cohn, 2009).
Cohn, J., Katzenbatch, J., & Vlak, G. (2008).Finding grooming breaththrough innovators. Harvard Business Review, 86(12), 62-69.
Zenger, J., & Folkman, J. Ten fatal flaws that derail leaders. Harvard Business Review, 87(6) 18.