In the multi focal model, innovations become real when they change social practice and when they become embedded in the activities of the community in question. The "same" innovative technological artifact can simultaneously be used in many different social practices and it can have multiple different user groups (Tuomi 2002, chap. 2).
The multi focal model implies that technology trajectories are generated in a field of social interests. In some special cases, when one dominant user group defines the present uses of the "product," this complex field of interactions can be reduced into a simple bipolar network of "producers" and "consumers." This dyadic model characterizes many mass produced "consumer goods" that are used in common cultural practices, where the "user" may relatively easily be represented as a generalized category with relatively homogeneous characteristics. In general, however, many different user groups exist simultaneously, and the evolution of the innovation is shaped in a potentially complex field of social forces, driven by different groups at different times (www.meaningprocessing.com).
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The multifocal model means that the capabilities of "downstream" communities are critical for the realization of latent innovation opportunities. It also means that technology development trajectories are formed in an essentially political process, where different stakeholders try and define how the latent opportunity could be made real within their own horizon of meaning, and where the co-evolution of multiple potentially incompatible interpretations of the practical meaning are negotiated. One conceptual implication of this is that innovations can be categorized based on the social characteristics of these negotiation processes.
Some innovations, for example, are "low conflict" innovations, that allow incompatible interpretations to be easily negotiated, thus facilitating rapid development. The different stakeholders may also be able to construct boundary objects and interfaces that effectively isolate the developmental dynamics of the different stakeholder groups, thus reducing conflict (Star 1992). Other innovations, in contrast, may involve heavy power struggles and complex negotiation processes, potentially bringing the evolution of the innovation to a halt, as documented in different theoretical contexts by, for example, Dougherty (1992).
The characteristics of the syntactic boundary, therefore, will have important consequences on the possibility to create digital representations of innovative artefacts (www.meaningprocessing.com).
Create a plan to communicate a creative and innovative management idea to the stakeholders identified above, persuade them of its benefits for the organization, and generate stakeholder feedback.
Toyota should take that first step of establishing a creative and innovative culture within their organization. They should also start to capture the ideas that are percolating up from their employees and clients or customers. The development of an idea and innovation management system that allows them to convert those great ideas into profitable new products and services for their clients or customers is also producing results.
So where do them go from here? The next challenge is to measure the success or failure of the ideas they should decided to pursue, quantify the financial impact of their innovation program and finally, report on the overall situation of their creativity and innovation system. Although this is often easier said than done, it can be quite simple if they choose to measure the right parameters (http://blog.thinkforachange.com).
First of all, why capture this information at all? In most organizational cultures money talks if they cannot clearly quantify how their innovation program is affecting the bottom line, then they likely will not have an innovation system to manage much longer. Here are a few other reasons to establish an innovation metrics system:
Ensure upper management support
Ensure that the correct resources are being applied
Motivate the innovation managers, teams and employees
Kill or alter unsuccessful idea-based projects
With the need for metrics now established the "what to measure" question should be next. Let's review some of the more common and popular innovation-related metrics:
Percentage of capital invested in innovation
Change in company's market value or share
Ratio of successful ideas to total ideas submitted
Number of ideas submitted by customers
Always on Time
Marked to Standard
Percentage of employees with an innovation-based performance goal
As they can see, it is important to establish only a few metrics across broad categories in order to keep the data collection manageable, while ensuring they have a good snapshot on the health of their innovation system (http://blog.thinkforachange.com).
Show how you would use feedback from stakeholders to identify key goals and priorities for the innovation.
A successful innovation and idea management program can really be boiled down to a few key concepts at Toyota:
Full management support
Inherent in each of these concepts is the culture in which they are employed. To impart a truly innovative culture within Toyota, ensure that they have the following systems and behaviors in place before they start:
Have a clearly defined mission, vision and goal for their innovation efforts and ensure that they align to the overall mission, vision and goals of the organization
Create an environment of calculated risk-taking where errors and mistakes are rewarded as "lessons learned"
Encourage open and honest collaboration
Set up an idea management system and appoint "champions" to shepherd the ideas through the process
Encourage new ideas in all meetings
Ensure the right problem solving tools are used for the right problems
Hire and/or train "dreamers" and match them up with "doers"
Remember that innovation is not just about the sporadic generation of ideas but the fostering of a culture where idea generation and action become an ingrained part of every employee's work day, producing a continuous flow of new, actionable ideas that improve their business (http://blog.thinkforachange.com).
Task 3: Over coming barriers
Identify at least four possible barriers to the implementation of change in an organization
There are many models for systematically managing change processes, so why are there problems in successfully implementing change? It is a famous nearby that top management carry is one of the critical success factors for any change endeavour. If top management does not buy in why should anybody else? Yet, there are some more barriers that could hinder successful change (www.themanager.org):
Barriers of Perception: Difficulties to identify and to analyze the core of the problem / the real cause of the problem.
Emotional Barriers: Lack of ability to process incomplete or contradictory information: Solving complex problems is never easy. Incomplete information may lead to an elimination of promising ideas.
Environmental Barriers: Lack of support: Many people perceive changes as a threat for their personal status. Changes move the whole organization as well as every single employee out of their 'comfort zone'. Therefore, there will always be some people who try to stop or ignore the process.
Approaches for Solutions
The implementation of any change process has effects on the employees in Toyota. Hence, there is a feedback from the change process to the people involved. Their experiences with a particular change project will have impact on further actions and their acceptance of further changes.
The following tips may improve acceptance of change in Toyota:
Be open-minded for new ideas. Do not sort out options and ideas until a final decision has to be taken (www.themanager.org).
Protect new ideas from criticism.
Listen to suggestions and appreciate good ideas.
Learn from mistakes in the past.
Build upon ideas.
Plan a strategy to overcome these identified barriers.
Prepared minds: The first strategy is to ensure that all participants of the planning process (e.g. senior managers, planners, decision makers) have a solid understanding of the business, its strategy as well as the assumptions behind that strategy. This understanding enables them to identify and to respond quickly to chances and challenges as they occur in real time.
Innovation intensifier: The second strategy is to increase the innovativeness of the organization's strategy. A strategic planning process cannot guarantee creative insight or excellent ideas in general; however the process can increase probability that they will occur by opening up participants to new thinking and challenging assumptions.
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Appropriate process: Overcoming selected problems and barriers enables the organization to consider own planning demands best and to focus on important issues of its organization, industry and environment. Hence organizations can create their customized strategic planning process, which offers the most benefits (www.themanager.org).
Explain how the strategy plan will help overcome resistance.
Organizations experience resistance to change because they may not know how to implement change. Other reasons for resistance to change are excessive focus on cost, failure to perceive benefits, lack of coordination and cooperation, uncertainty avoidance, and fear of loss. When managers have an excessive focus on cost, this prevents them from seeing all the benefits that will be associated with the change. However, when a firm fails to perceive the benefits involving change a firm may focus extensively on the negative side of change and the positive aspects will go unnoticed. Nevertheless, the lack of coordination and cooperation in a firm will discourage change.
To overcome resistance to change Toyota can identify a true need for change, find an idea that fits the need, get top management support, design the change for incremental implementation, develop plans to overcome resistance to change, create change teams, and foster idea champions. To motivate people to implement change they need to feel a sense of urgency. People must feel that change have to take place in order to keep their jobs. This will motivate employees to actively engage themselves in the change process. However, to find an idea that fits the need of change the entire organization should try to come up with creative solutions. On the other hand, top managers must support change in order for it to take place. (www.c10.cc).