Generating New Ideas

In my dealings, employers generally do a terrible job of creating an environment where employees consistently are willing to share new ideas. If employees are not rewarded for their new ideas, there is a good chance they are not going to be willing to share them.

Here’s what kills me: what could a really good idea mean to your company in terms of growth or savings? An innovative idea could translate in either millions in savings or millions in growth. And who better than to have these ideas come from than an employee who is in the “trenches” all day seeing what is working great for the company and what isn’t working at all?

My favorite idea for implementing new idea generation that I have come across is to have employees send in their innovative ideas to a unique company email address. As the business owner you go through each idea, implementing the good ones and throwing out the bad ones. And here is where you make the idea work: if you implement an employee’s idea at all you reward that employee with something like cash, gift certificates, additional time off, etc. You can reward them with anything they find of value, but just make sure you reward them.

If employees are constantly in the mindset of creating new ideas because they know they’ll be rewarded, think of the potential innovation you could bring to your own company.