Which catagory of innovator do you fall into

Posted on: August 14, 2009

Are you an anthropologist,an experimenter or maybe a cross pollinator?

We have been looking back to 2005 when Tom Kelley observed a number of roles that people can play in an organization to foster innovation and new ideas while offering an effective counter to naysayers.

His book the 10 faces of innovation argues that

The world is changing at an accelerated pace, and today’s great idea may be tomorrow’s anachronism. The learning roles help keep your team from becoming too internally focused, and remind the organization not to be so smug about what you “know”.

So what are the ten faces

1.The Anthropologist who ventures into areas that others do not dare

2.The Experimenter who is the calculated risk taker who invites others to collaborate, while making sure that the entire process is saving time and money.

3.The Cross-Pollinator,the net worker who draws associations and connections between seemingly unrelated ideas or concepts to break new ground.

These are the ideas men but you also need

4.The Hurdler,the problem-solver who gets a kick out of tackling something that’s never been done before.

5.The Collaborator who puts the team ahead of their own personal goals.

6.The Director who is the helicopter pilot and has a firm grasp on the pulse of their organization.

Then there are the people who make things happen

7.The Architect who maps out how to turn something ordinary into something distinctive

8.The Set Designer who create work environments that stimulate creativity.

9.The Storyteller who works in whatever medium best fits their skills and message: video, narrative, animation, even comic strips.

And finally

10.The Caregiver who is the foundation of human-powered innovation and has empathy to understand each individual customer and create a relationship.


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Innovation Manchester is a dynamic and diverse network of innovators and entrepreneurs, working together to make Manchester a better place to do business. We’re making Manchester a global innovation leader by creating: - new connections - new business opportunities - radical city-wide solutions Be part of the innovation conversation - all you need is enthusiasm and original thinking.

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