Delivery in day(s): 4
Build & Sustain Innovative Work Environment Assignment
- Why do you think it is important for leaders to make innovation a part of their management activities? (30–50 words)
- Provide three examples of innovative activities/ practices that leaders might undertake. Do not limit your ideas to those presented in the text.
- Why should managers encourage employees to offer ideas, views or suggestions regarding improvements/ changes that they consider would be beneficial to the organization? (100–125 words)’
- You are a section (departmental) manager in a large retail store. An employee has come to you to present an idea that they believe will result in improving and streamlining customer service procedures. Provide six examples of how you would respond in a bullet point list.
- Innovation necessarily involves risk. Explain what this means to you. (100–125 words)
- The General Confectionery Company’s product development team have designed a new confectionery product. This product is quite different from those generally sold by the General Confectionery Company. They have conducted suitable market research to identify their target market: 5 to 8-year-old children. This means that the product needs to appeal to both the children and their parents.
The company does not have the capacity to add this product to their product line without removing at least one of their other products. They will need to conduct a product analysis to identify which product/s should be removed from the list.
Even though this will be only one of a number of products sold by the company, it is necessary to analyze the risk involved in making the decision to go ahead with the new product. What risks will be faced and how might these risks be controlled? (150–200 words)
When risks are realized it might be necessary to implement a contingency plan. Explain what a contingency plan is and explain the important aspects of contingency plan development. (1 page)
- How could you determine whether innovations fit with/ are consistent with organizational goals and objectives? Provide at least five examples.
- You want to determine whether your own approach to innovation is effective. How might you do this? Provide at least three examples. You do not have to limit your ideas to those presented in the text.
- How do good leaders build effective relationships, based on mutual respect and trust, with employees? Provide at least five examples in a bullet point list.
- In a bullet point list, identify at least five of the working conditions that might be introduced to encourage innovative practice.
- Develop, in consultation where appropriate, an innovative idea that could be applied in the organization for which you work or any other business organization. This idea need not involve major changes—small changes can often have very beneficial effects. It must, however, add value.
Describe your proposed innovation and explain:
- why it is innovative
- what type of innovation it is
- how it will be of benefit to the organization
- what value it will add
- what impact it will have on the staff in the organization—both direct and indirect
What testing and exploration techniques might be utilized in order to determine whether your idea can be applied? Draw up a plan or schedule for the purpose of examining, testing, evaluating and refining your idea. (1–2 pages)
- Develop an innovative idea that would benefit from collaboration with others. The innovation will preferably relate to a work situation but if you are not currently working might relate to a personal situation.
- Document your ideas then discuss them with a range of stakeholders.
- State who the stakeholders are, whether they are internal or external to the organization and why they are stakeholders; then document their responses to your ideas.
- What conclusions did you come to, as a result of your discussions/ collaboration?
- How valuable do you think the discussion with the various stakeholders is?
- Do you think that asking others to collaborate in the development and assessment of innovative and creative ideas is a good idea? Explain and justify your answer. (100–150 words)
- From what sources might it be possible to gather current and emerging information that can be used to foster innovative ideas? Provide at least five examples. You might need to conduct some research of your own to determine appropriate sources.
- You have been asked to build a team that’s main responsibility is to innovate. What would you base your selection of team members on? (75–100 words)
- What do you think is the most important leadership role to maximize a team’s opportunities to innovate? (75–100 words)
- As a leader/ manager, how would you acknowledge, celebrate and reward successful innovation brought about by teams and individuals. Provide at least five examples. Why do you think it is necessary to do so? (200–250 words)
- You work for a health food production. It has come to your attention that other organizations in the industry have introduced products that they are promoting as being highly healthy and nutritious; however, the new products are very high in sugar content. This change in product has led to increased sales for those organizations. How would you evaluate the opportunity to introduce similar products within the wider organizational context? (100–150 words)
- You have a feeling that the physical environment in which your team works is negatively impacting on their motivation to innovate. How might you go about identifying shortcoming in the environment? (20–40 words)
- Explain how, as a department manager or supervisor, you might ensure that support and resources are accessible and sufficient for the operating needs of your team/ section/ division. (150–200 words)
- What resources should be available, to foster, promote and encourage innovation? Provide at least 10 examples in a bullet point list.
- If you had a chance to create a unique workspace, what would be most important? Interaction with fellow employees? Design and color? Uniqueness? Give reasons for your answer. (50–75 words)
- Make at least three realistic suggestions for improving the atmosphere in your workplace or a workplace you are familiar with to increase/ improve creative input. Use drawings, diagrams etc to help explain your ideas. (1 page)
Explain how proactively sharing relevant information, knowledge and skills analysis with work colleagues can help them to innovate. (150–200 words)
- You want to encourage your staff to be creative and innovative. What informal and formal learning opportunities might you provide them with to help them develop the skills needed for innovation? Provide at least five examples.
- What kinds of thinking or tools might individuals develop as a result of formal and informal learning opportunities? Provide at least five examples.
- How can individuals learn from the experience of mentors?
Summative Assessment 1
Explain the concept of innovation and why it is necessary for organizations to practice innovation in today’s world of work. (75–100 words)
Explain the context for innovation in the workplace by identifying what context relates to. Provide at least 10 examples.
Describe the factors and tools that can be used to motivate individuals to use creative thinking and apply innovative work practices. Provide at least three examples.
Explain the legislative framework that needs to come under consideration when deciding whether or not to go ahead with an innovative idea/ proposal. (75–100 words)
Explain how a command and control approach to management and leadership can hinder innovation. (100–150 words)
Describe typical barriers to innovation with teams and organizations. Provide at least five examples of barriers.
Summative Assessment 2
- Do not neglect the old for the new. The existing business must not lose priority simply because an innovative idea has been suggested. Successful innovation requires support from the existing business in terms of finance and other resources. However, when assessing risk, you must take into consideration the impact the new activities are likely to have on the existing activities. One aspect of risk assessment should involve determining whether the new ideas/ improvements or innovations will prevent the already successful operations from continuing to operate at the currently accepted level.
Choose an organization you are familiar with. This might be an organization you work for or you might need to conduct research into another organization. Answer the following questions in relation to your chosen organization, explaining and giving verifiable reasons for your answers:
- Do you consider that the organization is prepared to take risks in order to succeed?
- Why is the concept of risk essential to change, innovation and the marketplace success of organizations?
- What is the organisation’s attitude toward failure, mistakes and/or lack of success at the organizational level and the personal or individual level?
- How does this make employees feel with regard to making suggestions, proposing new ideas or attempting to develop new products, services or markets?
- How do you think mistakes should be viewed, if the organization is to proactively support innovation and change?
- How can frontline managers encourage and support employees so that they contribute new and innovative ideas?
- What kinds of work conditions and procedures are in place or should be in place to support innovation?
- What barriers to innovation exist within the organization?
- How can managers lead by example when it comes to innovation?
- What training or learning opportunities might be provided so that employees can develop appropriate innovation skills?
- Why do you think managers should regularly evaluate their own approaches for consistency with the wider organizational or project context?
- How does the organisation’s physical environment support innovation? How might it need to be changed?
- Outline any legislative framework that impacts on operations in the relevant workplace context.
You should address all the topics in this unit of work but might also supplement this information by carrying out your own research. Remember to properly cite any sources used.