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At some level each of us has a desire to innovate. Certainly there is a scale… some are looking for new ways to travel through space, while some are simply looking for a more efficient way to manage their to-do list. Regardless, the desire to innovate exists in each of us. So, what’s the key to innovation?
We find a compelling answer to this question from one of the brightest innovators in our world today. Elon Musk, who some call the real life Tony Stark, is on the forefront of innovation in the spaces of technology and engineering. After founding and selling PayPal, he now focuses on developing revolutionary spacecraft at SpaceX, and paradigm shifting electric vehicles at Tesla. So what keeps him on the edge? When asked how he is able to manage his time and continue innovation across these different endeavors, he gave a simple answer:
“I think it’s very important to have a feedback loop, where you’re constantly thinking about what you’ve done and how you could be doing it better. I think that’s the single best piece of advice: constantly think about how you could be doing things better and questioning yourself.”
There is a lot to consider with that quote, but I think it’s worth focusing on this one concept: Accountability fuels innovation.
Do you want to be a great leader who helps your team uncover innovative strategies, practices, and products? Take a look at your workflow and accountability process. So much of what takes place on a daily basis in our workplaces happens because it has always happened, not necessarily because it is the best way.
Consider your daily routines. Carve out some time to inspect your processes. What can you tweak? What can you overhaul? What can you throw out altogether? Efficiency, innovation, and great habits do not happen by accident. They happen because you question yourself, and resolve to find better ways.