Why do some innovations and innovators seem to rise above the defeats and setbacks while others get derailed? Is it even necessary for us to be innovative? Larry Osborne is not only an author but a “serial innovator” in the growing church he leads, and he offers biblical perspective for business, personal, and church innovation from his new book Innovation’s Dirty Little Secret. Larry points out that change for change’s sake is “a waste of time” because it can give people around you “organizational whiplash.” Instead, change what needs to be changed to become more effective. Larry points out the necessary principles of innovation:

Have an ‘exit strategy.’
Here’s a painful truth: Most innovations fail. Spend just as much time planning a graceful exit as you do the actual innovation. Planning ahead will reduce the amount of time it takes for you to rebound and move to the next season.

Use words like ‘experiment’ or ‘trial run.’
Don’t treat the idea as concrete; Larry points out the importance of underselling a product to soften the transition and lower expectations. If it doesn’t work, don’t keep doing it!

An innovation or an invention?
Sometimes a new product or strategy is poised to become “the next big thing.” But it only becomes innovative if it 1) solves a problem and 2) is widely adopted.

The importance of counsel.
In Larry’s words, “I’m a big fan of finding advisors that are outside of our natural circles.” We generally have a few circles of people we consult – our team (inner circle), our tribe (larger circle), and those outside our circle who can see and reorganize what isn’t working within our church or organization.

This program originally aired on October 31.

Highlight – Embracing innovation

Embracing innovation

Image: Flickr

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