How to Write a Good Innovation Challenge
Why Is It Important to Use Challenges in Your Collective Innovation Campaign?
Focus on the Future
Set a Time Limit
Set a Narrow Scope
A time limit isn’t the only parameter that you should put into place. An innovation challenge also needs a narrow scope that focuses on specific topics to refine it as much as possible. This isn’t to say that the scope should be too specific, as this can hinder the creative process and stagnate innovation.
It’s important to strike the right balance by keeping the scope narrow, but not restrictive. You need to ensure that it keeps people on track and helps focus on the right aspects of an idea but doesn’t remain closed off from further creativity. And of course, you should never include any potential solution into the challenges you set your people, as this can lead to a lack of creativity in the ideation process.
Make It Emotional
It’s important to include an empathy exercise on your participants when writing a challenge. Reducing costs is a business objective, but it isn’t an innovation challenge as it does not emotionally engage your audience.
A global objective like this needs to be cut into more specific challenges that have an emotional impact on the people who are going to participate. You must then ask yourself, how does this problem affect the user?
Designate the Resources
An Example of a Good Challenge
Now that you know how to write a good challenge, let’s take a look at an example of a good challenge in action. Back in November 2018, Harvard Business Review wrote an article titled ‘The End of Bureaucracy’, wherein they discussed the hindrance that bureaucracy has on an organization. In it, they stated that “bureaucracy saps initiative, inhibits risk taking, and crushes creativity. It’s a tax on human achievement.”
So they decided to do something about it. They set a Beyond Bureaucracy Challenge, a challenge which called for readers to submit their own bold ideas, inspiring stories, and experiments to help end bureaucracy within an organization.
Within a few weeks, they received 104 entries from around the world from people working to make their organizations “ more resilient, inventive, inspiring, and accountable.” This goes to show that by writing a good challenge that highlights a specific problem that many people are familiar with, your organization can inspire a wealth of valuable ideas to implement.
Writing an innovation challenge is the key to setting up your ideation process up for success. It will help you to refine the ideas crowdsourced by your people and keep it on the right track for success. Book a demo to see for yourself how setting up innovation challenges can help your business thrive.