February 24, 2010

Culture Of Innovation

Written by Boyd Bailey

Culture Of Innovation… “Neither do men pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst, the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.” Matthew 9:17

Is your work, home, church or ministry a culture of innovation? Another way to say it is, are you committed to improvement and excellence in everything you do? If so, this requires innovation. Anytime you introduce new thinking, or better ways of doing what you do, you innovate. It is challenging the established with a more excellent way.

Innovation is not easy because we are creatures of habit, but comfortable creatures can get crushed under the weight of competition. For example: is the look and feel of your product fresh and engaging, or is it the same old tired look? Can the same be said of your career choice? Are you going down the same old road that someone else expects of you, or is the Lord calling you to a new and innovate way to serve people in your work?

Institutions, by nature, are slow to innovate. Unwittingly they can become stuck in mediocrity at best. A subtle arrogance causes a long-standing organization to think they are too big to fail. It is this lazy and brash thinking that lacks innovation. We lose when we chose to accept the status quo over a compelling and bright vision for the future.

So, what does a culture of innovation look like? New ideas are rewarded, listened to and implemented. Research and development is always engaged in creating new products with a better delivery system. There is a relentless retooling, so that survey information from the customer is not just filed away, but becomes the focus of innovation.

It is bold but necessary at times to let go of the old and embrace the new. You will dilute innovation’s effectiveness, if it is just attached to a worn out way of doing things. Instead, align your best and brightest thinking within your core business or ministry. Innovation proves the most valuable when it is integrated within the DNA of the culture.

Most importantly, make sure your relationship with Christ is emerging, changing and advancing. Perhaps you introduce a new discipline like a 24-hour silent prayer retreat, or you engage in a mission trip. Growing intimacy with the Almighty requires innovation.

“If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned” (John 15:6).

How can I apply innovation to my life and work? How can I facilitate a fresh faith?

Related Readings: 2 Kings 16:10-17; Ecclesiastes 3:6; Matthew 26:61; 18:3

Transformational Living
What did I learn from the Lord in today’s Bible reading? How will I respond?

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