How to Encourage Innovation in the Workplace

If encouraging innovation is important to your organization, you might want to pay attention to a recent study that examined key variables that influence employees’ decisions about whether or not to engage in behaviors such as voluntarily introducing or applying new ideas, products, processes, and procedures to their jobs or work units.

The study, published in the April 2010 issue of the Academy of Management Journal, found that employees in the study were more likely to engage in innovative behavior when they expected it would benefit their work than when they did not expect such an outcome. Similarly, they avoided engaging in innovative behavior when they feared doing so would cause others to view them negatively.

The researchers identified five factors that influenced employees’ expectations about the outcomes related to engaging in innovation behaviors. The good news is that most of those five factors are controllable by management. To learn what those factors are and to read about seven practical suggestions for encouraging your employees to engage in innovative behavior, I invite you to read my article How to Encourage Employees to Engage in Innovative Behavior. And let me know what you think!

© 2010 Pat Lynch. All rights reserved.

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