Building a Culture of Innovation

Building a culture of innovationThese are exciting times in communications – the advent of Unified Communications, the possibility of WebRTC and the obvious power of Hosted PBX have created a lot of opportunity. But in order to realize the opportunity, cloud communications providers must create a culture of innovation.

You must innovate in order to succeed.

At CoreDial, we celebrate innovation, as well as entrepreneurship, accountability and responsibility. Getting stuff done. A level of “stick-to-it-iveness” is another way to describe our culture. We’re building a culture that enables our team to innovate and create solutions to problems, and constantly find ways to help our Service Provider Partners to succeed. By focusing on our employees' career development, and what motivates them, we are able to inspire the team to work towards our common goals for the company.

And because we’re committed to helping our partners succeed, that positive energy helps every employee to work through challenges, and find ways to improve both personally and professionally.

So as we focus on our Partners success, here are some of the areas we suggest they focus on related to creating a culture of innovation:

  • Inspire and encourage. True innovation is difficult, and you need a passionate team that is inspired to keep working to overcome the obstacles that emerge. That means you need to fire up your team, lead by example, and gain agreement that you’re all working towards a common goal, a higher purpose.
  • Enable Autonomy. For your team to feel free to innovate, they have to have the authority to make decisions, even if they’re different from the decisions you would’ve made. I find this to be one of the more difficult aspects of building a culture – you want things done a certain way, but you also want your team to be entrepreneurial. Good and frequent communication is key on this one. 
  • Do the work. As Thomas Edison once said, “genius is one percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration.” It’s important to remember that innovation does not mean sitting around, staring at walls and trying to come up with great ideas. A culture of innovation will only take hold if there is hard work being done to bring the ideas to life.
  • Reward Courage. I believe that you want to have a team that’s unafraid to try anything. Change the world. Why not? The best way to create this culture is by allowing your people to fail – not that you want them to fail, but when they do, it important that you show appreciation for the courage they showed in trying something that didn’t quite work. The courage to try new things must be rewarded. If your team members know they’ll be rewarded for acting entrepreneurially and won’t be punished if it doesn’t go well, they’ll innovate. And the business will be the beneficiary.

Do you have an innovative culture? How do you feed that culture? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!