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So, how do you frame challenges that would not hamper innovation from happening? Framing innovation challenges can be arduous. The way you frame challenges for ideation plays a big factor on the type of solutions you will generate later on. Framing can be categorized to three types:

  • Problem Frames. These are used when making specifications and gathering requirements. These are used to generate ideas.
  • Decision Frames. These are for making choices
  • Thinking Frames. These frames involve prior experiences and deep mental structures.

There are a lot of ways on how to frame challenges but we’ll keep it short and simple.

  • Creative framing through metaphor is powerful. It gives a unique perspective of the thoughts, feelings, and experiences of people.
  • Cultural Sensitivity. You need to have a good understanding of the different perceptions, beliefs, and cultural values of your market or audience to be able to frame effective challenges.
  • Emotional experience is important. Being able to connect with the people around you drives more engagement from them.

Successful Innovation Challenge

A successful challenge needs to have the elements found in constructing the challenge. The more elements included the better and more successful the challenge will be. The first four elements listed below are mandatory, but having more than the mandatory elements are guaranteed to bring more favorable outputs.

  • You need a sponsor. You need someone that who can engage your people and who will let them believe of his power, capacity, and budget to implement the best ideas.
  • You need to have a stop and start date for people to engage with the challenge. Two week is said to be the optimum duration.
  • You need an objective. Your objective will help you turn goals into measurable targets.
  • You need a very clear call to action.
  • You need a list of ideas that you want and don’t want.
  • You need time scales, milestones, and resources.
  • You need evaluation process and success criteria.
  • You need the first ideas to seed the challenge.
  • You need to know how the participants will be recognized or rewarded.

The Power of Three: Innovation Horizons

Consistency in growth is important in any organization. In order to achieve such growth consistency while at the same time attending to their current business set-up, there are three innovation horizon frameworks that are executed:

Horizon 1. The core horizon is where ideas that improve or optimize existing products and services in existing markets and client are found.

Horizon 2. The adjacent horizon is where ideas that help you expand from existing business with incremental products and services and enter adjacent markets are found.

Horizon 3. The transformational horizon describes ideas that will help breakthrough into markets that don’t exist yet with products and services that also don’t exist yet.

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Tools for identifying Innovation Challenges

There are three tools you should keep in mind when identifying innovation challenges:

  • Capturing challenges in a workshop with people from different parts of the organization.
  • Capturing challenges from people in an interview with people from the same part of the organization.
  • Framing the challenges into something that people can engage with.
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