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3 Examples of innovation in the workplace

innovationInnovation is a hard to define quality that can lead to revolutionary breakthroughs that help individuals and organisations to make changes for the better.  For that reason, it is a much sought after skill, and all businesses make efforts to encourage it.  There are hundreds of great examples of innovation in workplaces of all shapes and sizes.

Many of these examples involve an organisation that has had the vision to try something different, and been rewarded for doing so.  Here are three very different, but equally positive, examples that show how encouraging innovation in the workplace can lead to positive results:

Example 1: Spotify

Here is an example of a company that spotted a gap in the market and exploited it through creative and innovative thinking.  The subscription music service allows paying users to stream unlimited music on their computers and phones.  Launched at a time when piracy was at a high level, and people were reluctant to pay above the odds to download music, the service addressed a clear new market, and offered individuals an affordable and revolutionary way to enjoy high quantities of music, without having to resort to illegal downloads.

Example 2: Pitney Bowes Credit Corporation

Another example of innovation saw this division of Pitney Bowes wanting to improve communication between their employees in order to increase idea generation.  The company decided to completely redesign the interior office space to resemble a calm, small village.  The idea was to break down communication barriers.  The redesigned office had its own village square and café, which was designed to encourage trust and a feeling of community amongst employees.  The relaxed workplace saw the company go from strength to strength, launching successful new products because of the increased collaboration and communication levels.

Example 3: Team Sky

All professional sport is now a business, because of the vast amounts of sponsorship money involved.  In cycling, Team Sky used innovation to great success in 2012 to pull off one of the greatest British sporting feats of all time in winning the Tour de France.  Dave Brailsford, performance director at British Cycling, put the success down to a strategy of incremental improvements.  The team took the innovative approach of making tiny improvements in all areas, going to unprecedented extremes, like ordering a custom-made, skin-tight, leader’s yellow jersey for Bradley Wiggins to wear in time trials.

The philosophy was that these slight changes would gradually add up, ultimately proving to be the difference between success and failure.

It is clear that all organisations should focus on improving innovation, no matter what sector they are involved in. Innovation inspires the ideas of the future, and ensures that progress is constant.

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