Apple just announced their Apple Watch. It could be arguably one of the most innovative products they ever introduced. To me it’s not so much the product but a signal that Apple may have returned to the ‘innovation’ process created by Steve Jobs. I suggest you look at your own organization and ask yourself  “What causes our people to resist innovation?” “Do we encouarge change?”   As a workshop leader I have interviewed thousands of corporate employees and found the following “Yes, but…” answers to why innovation is not part of their current business DNA. Any of these sound familar? Is it time to make Shift Happen?

Ask lots of questions. Don't be afraid of the answers. It's your move.

Ask lots of questions. Don’t be afraid of the answers. It’s your move.

Fear of change.
Fear of retribution.
Ego, turf wars.
Following their leader.
Nonbelievers – waste of time.
Lack of knowledge.
It’s not my job!
Giving up control.
No incentive – not in their goals.
Shortsightedness, impatience.
Age of employee.
Dislike of formal process of innovation.

To Achieve Better Innovative Shifts in 2015 I have distilled the process to five steps. While I am not suggesting this list is complete it is a great starting point to evolve from being a expert to becoming an extraordinary innovator. It’s time to create an innovative blueprint for creating shifts in your business. Even Steve Jobs might agree?

1- Embrace and Leverage New Technologies
Advances in technology and its application offer a continuous stream of new ways to connect our clients and reach new prospects. Consider everything. Something may not be right for you, but that doesn’t mean everything is wrong. Lots of people dismissed Pinterest as the latest time drain, and it probably was for many. But, as example, hotels and meeting venues have found that it’s a great way to showcase their facilities and reach new markets. Do you have a product or service that can be featured on Pinterest? Is your story better told on YouTube? Embrace these changes in communications technology to tell your story, build your brand and enhance client relations.

2- Focus on Current Customers
It’s not just about attracting new clients. There is tremendous opportunity in doing more business with existing clients. It is always easier to sell to someone who has already bought from you in the past, so match what you offer to what each client is buying and fill in the holes. Find new products and services to offer.

3-Charge for Everything You Can
Take a cue from the airlines. They are no longer just in the transportation business. They are retailers of services and products to sell to the people they move. They did it by breaking down every aspect of their offering and identified ways to charge extra, whether it’s fees baggage or revenue through special “membership programs,” such as United’s Mileage Plus Explorer Card. What have you been giving away as part of your service or product that you can charge separately for? Try some tests. People are still complaining about baggage fees, but they keep paying them, and it’s becoming a huge source or revenue for what had been an ailing industry.

4- Use Joint Ventures
Joint ventures offer a fast way to grow, and one that has a higher potential of success than going it alone. Beyond the ability to share and leverage resources, whether they be perishable inventories or staff time, you get a quick way to offer more products and services to your existing clients and the instant endorsement of your venture partner that swings open the doors to new prospects.

5-Delegate to Achieve More
You’re good at what you do, but are you good at everything that needs to be done? Look at the tasks involved in achieving your objectives and decide which you can do, which you want to do and which are better handled by others. Stop diluting your effectives by doing too much. And stop diluting the quality of what you offer by doing things that others can do better for you.

Write sideways to make Shift HappenToday, most employees are specialists. To succeed today you need to be more of a deep generalist who have wide perspectives.

Innovative thinkig requires selfless balancing of what is good, better, and best for both you and your organization.

Good employees and leaders have professional credibility. Great employees and leaders build deep personal trust.

Most employees are paid to supply expertise and information. To thrive in today’s shifting environment we must provide insight and wisdom that leads to ensuring that Shift Happens!®

To help identify what you and your clients really want click here:                                                 www.shifthappens.coachesconsole. com and download my Strategic Planning workshop for $1.