How can a company create a strong culture of innovation?
For a company to be successful, the Innovation Value Pyramid shows us that it is crucial to have a strong culture of innovation; You can do this by hiring the right people, challenging the status quo, encouraging creativity and setting up an environment conducive to idea generation. The late Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos, believed that company culture is the key to a successful business. He introduced many different initiatives to ensure that Zappos is a fun and creative place to work. If you want your company to be known for its service innovation, Tony Hsieh's example is one to follow.
At the core of Tony Hsieh's business philosophy is the concept of happiness. He truly believes that happy employees lead to satisfied customers, leading to a successful business. Tony has said, "If we can get the culture right, most other stuff like delivering great customer service or building a great long-term brand will just fall into place."
Encouraging creativity and innovation is good for business and great for employee morale. When employees feel like they can be creative and innovative at work, they are more likely to be engaged and passionate about their jobs. Tony Hsieh realized this and made sure that Zappos was a place where employees could let their creativity shine.
Tony encouraged creativity by implementing the "Holacracy" management system. With Holacracy, there are no job titles or managers; this allows employees to have much autonomy and be more creative in their roles. In addition, Tony has also implemented a policy called "The Offer." The Offer is a $2,000 bonus that any employee can receive if they quit. Tony believes that this policy helps weed out employees who are not passionate about their work. It also encourages employees to think outside the box.
While Tony Hsieh's methods may seem extreme, they have worked exceptionally well for Zappos. As a result, the company has been very successful and ranked as one of the best places to work by Forbes. Role models like Hsieh are important for companies who want to encourage a culture of innovation. His example shows us that it is possible to create a fun and creative work environment in which you can solve problems, get some honest hard work done, and still produce happy customers (and a healthy bottom line).
So how can you apply this to your business?
It is important to remember that Tony Hsieh's methods may not work for every business model. However, there are some key takeaways that any business can apply to create a more robust culture of innovation.
Some key takeaways include:
- Hiring the right people is essential. Please make sure you employ creative and passionate employees about their work.
- Encouraging creativity is critical. You can do this by implementing policies like "The Offer" or giving employees autonomy to be creative in their roles.
- Make sure your workplace is fun and encouraging. This will help create a positive work environment conducive to idea generation.
By taking to first step to following Tony Hsieh's example, you can create a strong culture of innovation at your company, leading to happier employees and customers and a more successful business.
You may also be interested in this article: How Company Culture Affects Innovation - 5 Lessons from Tony Hsieh at Zappos.