I was reading and article recently that stated that in order to innovate we must challenge or disrupt at least one of the fundamental principles or rules that we operate by in our chosen sector. I thought about this for a while, thinking it might sound radical to some people, and then decided that the statement was perfectly true.
If you just think for a minute or two about all of the rules that we conform to as a) individuals and b) groups then you will be surprised at how long the list is. Your list might start something like:
- I begin work at 9am and leave at 5pm
- I only work Monday to Friday
- I must get my timesheet in by 5pm on Friday
- Only senior managers can use the car park
- We must answer the telephone within 5 rings
We all conform to rules and create boundaries which we then become constrained by for no good reason. Try breaking some rules and see what happens, don’t think of it as breaking rules, just think of it as stretching boundaries. If you are the nervous type who does not want to act and then ask for forgiveness later try telling your boss or colleagues that ‘If we broke rule x or rule y then it would be possible to …’.
And one final thought, if you do not wish to be branded an anarchist, tell people that you are performing Boundary Analysis rather than rule breaking!