The inspiration for the title of this post actually comes from an article in Inc. in the May 2010 issue. (I am a bit behind in reading, but better late than never.) The online version can be found here at Incubation Nation. The article itself does not have anything to do with human resources. It is about 20 centers of innovation around the United States where new ideas and new start up companies are fostered and developed. It is an interesting read to find what and where. The relationship to HR comes from the fact that reading this prompted two questions to me.
First, where is the innovation in HR coming from? Are there “centers” of HR thought? Are there any HR thinktanks? (Cornell perhaps?) I am not sure if this can be tied to a location. It can certainly be tied to an event, that of HREvolution. (Hey Trish… when and where is the next one? I would suggest Atlanta, which will also be the host city for SHRM in 2011. We could have a convergence of meetings and a divergence of thought all at the same time.) It can also be tied to a number of people I consider “thought leaders.” These include Trish McFarlane, Kris Dunn, Laurie Ruettimann, Steve Boese, Jessica Lee to name just a few. (The ranks grow each day. There is some very creative stuff coming from very creative people that you won’t find in the mainstream HR literature. You need to read their blogs. It is encouraging to see, however, some of this stuff starting to seep into some mainstream channels.) Perhaps you, the reader, can someone you consider to be a thought leader in HR? Who is the engine leading your train of thought?
The second question this article prompted was one for you, yes you! Does your company have great ideas being born? Do you have centers in your organization where creativity runs free? Or do you have an organization that lets convention run roughshod over creativity? Do you reward it or punish it?
What about you personally? Have you had a great idea that you have been able to implement? Was it easy or hard to do? If it was hard for you then it is probably hard for others. What can you do differently in your organization to foster “great ideas”?
I know, this is more questions than answers. I am looking for the answers from you. Give me examples, give me names, give me ideas….