If you need a good idea or two to help take your practice to the next level, then you might take a tip from someone who makes idea generation his business: Stephen Harvill. president of Creative Ventures, a strategic consulting firm, Harvill and his team pioneered methods and techniques that have helped companies reach their potential.
Industry professionals attending the 2015 Life Insurance Conference, being held in Arlington, Va. April 13-15, got a taste of those methods and techniques at the conference’s closing general session on Tuesday.
“Companies don’t suffer from a lack of ideas,” said Harvill. “They suffer from lack of knowing what to do to make an ideal impactful.”
To that end, Harvill explained how to find success in “The Idea Factory:” a simple, efficient and repeatable process for developing and realizing ideas — be they for making existing products or services more attractive or building on wholly original and transformative concepts. Over the past 24 years, Harvill has put his “systemic approach” to idea development to use at a wide range of businesses, from Fortune 100 companies to small start-ups.
Over the course of the 75-minute session, Harvill outlined 10 elements that make up “The Idea Factory.” These include:
To be innovative as a business, you have to askfor innovation from colleagues. Ideas have to connect directly to value.
All ideas have beginning and beginnings are fired by emotion. You have to have the ability to capture your idea at “genesis points.”
The place for ideas is important. Most great ideas are developed somewhere other than the standard office environment.
A property of idea development is that restrictive elements, such as resources or spaces (e.g., one’s garage) seem to encourage creativity.
Ideas are like magnets, connecting to one another and then often connecting to something unseen.
The evolution of ideas
Ideas gain power through a three-part cycle: genesis, “I get it” (understanding); and “I can do it” (application).
What you do everyday matters more than what you do once in a while. Said Harvill: “You have to commit!”