I am reading through The Ten Faces of Innovation, by Tom Kelley of IDEO, relaying some of the concepts, and relating his ten innovation "personas" to church leadership in the postmodern world. The first face was the Anthropologist
The second "face of innovation" from Tom Kelley’s The Ten Faces of Innovation is that of the Experimenter. The guy on the right is a bit of an experimenter, and seems to be having a lot of fun. Innovation: it’s not just necessary, it’s fun!
Experimenters love to play, often working with a wide variety of people and settings. They also prototype new ideas very quickly, going from concept to sketch/model to new offering at break-neck speed. Because of the speed of the process, the prototypes can be a bit lo-fi, but that’s alright, they’re just prototypes, right? Tom talks about the fact that things don’t have to be polished to be prototyped.
A particularly interesting idea was "Implementing by experimenting". Instead of deciding what the final product is going to look like, preparing everything, and then "rolling it out" on people (people tend to resist things being rolled out on them), you experiment as you go. You remain flexible, you call it a "beta" (a la Google), you invite input in real-time from people, and you make it possible to implement changes quickly. This way people feel there is some possibility of change, that their input matters, that features can still be "built-in", that this isn’t the final product and you’re going to like it, mister. This relates in many ways to my Church 2.0 post on radical trust.