One of the webinars I attended recently was on “How to Increase Innovation & Engagement,” which is part of the Leaders in Lockdown series organized by Team Building Asia.
The main speaker was Natalie Turner, innovator speaker and author of Yes, You Can Innovate. Driven by innovation and entrepreneurship, Natalie invented the “6 ‘I’s®,” an innovative methodology applied by multinationals across the globe. While her presentation was meant for business organizations, I thought this could also apply to associations.
Here are the six ‘I’s of Natalie’s innovation framework, which she complemented with a corresponding mind-set (in parenthesis), and where I added how associations can relate to:
Identify opportunities by understanding trends, patterns and future areas of growth (curiosity). Due to the pandemic, associations everywhere are currently exploring opportunities to compensate for loss of revenue due to event cancellation, and slow or reduced membership dues collection, among others. Most are looking at doing more virtual meetings and events and modifying membership and revenue models to be able to cope and survive during these difficult times.
Ignite ideas by creating novel solutions (creativity). Identification of an idea is merely the first step. It is important that ideas are stimulated to germinate them into something useful, relevant, and impactful. Associations should consider providing members with tools and tips on how to respond, recover and rebuild during and after Covid-19.
Investigate by prototyping, testing and researching ideas (critical). Analytical thinking would be indispensable at the investigation stage. This is where many ideas will be trimmed down to one project that will be worth pursuing. It is critical for associations to study all aspects of the idea and develop a selection criteria that best represents the interest of all stakeholders of the association.
Invest by having the determination to create business models and persuade others (courage). This is the phase where pragmatic decision making and financial acumen are necessary to set the project in motion. With limited resources, associations must be prudent in undertaking programs that should ultimately bring ROI to both the organization and its members.
Implement by making an idea happen and creating value from it (committed). Equally essential after the investment has been made is to implement the project so the association can reap the fruit as it desired and envisioned at the onset.
Improve by optimizing ideas and learning from success and failure (clever). Continuous monitoring and recalibration are part of this improvement stage. It is a must for associations to do this lest the time, effort, and money spent reaching this part will be foregone and wasted.
The above framework allows the six ‘I’s’ to iterate back to step 1 through 6. It will be helpful to build a team around it and assign one staff to be the identifier, the igniter, the investigator, the investor, the implementer and the improver, or something along these areas. Perhaps you can give this framework a try?
The column contributor, Octavio “Bobby” Peralta, is concurrently the secretary-general of the Association of Development Financing Institutions in Asia and the Pacific and the Founder & CEO of the Philippine Council of Associations and Association Executives. Pcaae is holding the Associations Summit 8 (AS8) on November 25 and 26, 2020 at the Philippine International Convention Center which is expected to draw over 200 association professionals here and abroad. The two-day event is supported by Adfiap, the Tourism Promotions Board, and the PICC. E-mail email@example.com for more details on AS8.
Image credits: six-i-innovation.com