Innovation Community: Definition and Benefits

Great Idea by a TeamCreativity builds success.

If your organization is like most others, many creative ideas are going to come from your employees. An Innovation Community enables this. Wondering what exactly is an “innovation community?”

Here’s a definition:
An innovation community is a community within the workplace where ideas can be freely exchanged. It creates a productive discussion between management and employees.

As this Wall Street Journal article notes, an innovation community can give new shape and purpose to the knowledge your employees already have.

However, many companies aren’t tapping into ideas from their employees to the full extent. They aren’t creating an open community where ideas can flow. Inc. magazine says:

“Unfortunately, most companies fail to unleash their most valuable resources: human creativity, imagination, and original thinking. They lack a systematic approach to building a culture of innovation, and then wonder why they keep getting beaten to the punch.”

So don’t keep getting beaten to the punch by your competitors. Have your organization win by “harnessing the creative energies and the insights of your employees across functions and ranks” as noted in the Wall Street Journal article linked above.

Benefits of an Innovation Community

  • Reduce Risk. An innovation community is an easy and inexpensive way to tackle too big or risky projects by individual operating units. You’re using your greatest resources in the workplace to further your company and it isn’t costing you an extra penny!
  • Inspire Trust. Listening to your employees and their ideas shows your employees that you trust them. This will make them feel trusted and will inspire them to share more ideas.
  • Create Open Communication. Innovation communities center around open communication. This encourages ideas that build on ideas of others. Open communication also helps improve your organization’s overall culture.
  • Promote Learning. Innovation communities bring people together to share their ideas. The discussions and problem-solving that occur can lead to superior organization-wide learning.

Interested in learning more? Find out how to really tap into your employees’ ideas and build an Employee Suggestion Program.

Leila Durmaz

Hello, I'm your author, Leila Durmaz. I spend a lot of my time researching the best practices for innovation management, and writing articles to share them. I hope you find them helpful! I work at Accompa - one of our products is IdeaGlow innovation management software.

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