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Empathy Before Innovation

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When some of our clients begin looking for innovation management software, they often already have an idea of what it is they want and how they want to use it. Part of our job to ensure our clients’ success is to shake up their presumptions about innovation while at the same time, understanding what their needs and issues are. We also encourage our clients to remember something that Co. Design discussed: that innovation begins with empathy.

Team working from above_desk_office

Fundamentally, our clients are seeking to understand the needs and the wants of whomever they’re getting ideas from. Whether it’s their employees, stakeholders, customers, etc., the entire purpose of utilising an idea management system is to get the ideas that should help solve the crucial issues within a business or improve upon a product or service. While the metrics of our system can help you find those ideas which are prompting the most discussions and positive votes, the approach you take towards approving or taking on ideas has to be one that stems from a clear understanding of your audience.

Think to yourself as you read through an idea what the effects will be if you put in place. Ensure that you analyse the responses that you receive and the opinions represented and try to put yourself in the shoes of those most affected. Don’t just look at the bottom line and how it affects you or your immediate co-workers, examine the effects of the idea in waves throughout the business. Once you are used to approaching ideas from this perspective, you will be able to propose challenges and find solutions that fir your organisation the best. The best innovative suggestions and ideas for a product or service can come from those who use the product or service every day. If you aren’t already one of those people, put yourself in their position.

While the approach you take when you decide to review or adopt an idea is going to differ based on the type of business you engage in and the audience you’re polling, there is never any harm in being more empathetic and trying to understand the issue from a market perspective.

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