Failing Oh So Fast

So, I didnÕt know.I needed help.And I failed.And it is good.

failing at innovation

My organization has an opportunity to show its systems technology at a major trade show in Las Vegas.  This is the sort of show that puts any other show to shame in terms of the quality and quantity of technology unveiled and companies in attendance.

I assumed it would be easy to get volunteers from the organization to want to participate.  The technology spectacle at the show will be fascinating, we can talk up our latest technology, and heck, it gets us out of the cold and dreary Midwest for a week in January.

Boy, was I wrong.  No one on the team had much interest.

I learned quickly why. 

I was asking for volunteers to join a project that I was not yet sold on myself.  I didnÕt have, nor show, passion enough to even want to go myself. 

I did not give enough direction to the potential volunteers to know what the goal would be.  Is the goal to develop a new client base by participating in the show?  Is it to be able to unveil new technology of our own?  Or, is it to increase our own learning on how others interact with our technology?

Once I was reminded that the goal was not clear, the discussion changed for the positive.  We discussed what the desired outcome would be for the organization.  This sparked new ideas, and the team became more animated and interested.  And yes, we ended up getting more than enough passionate volunteers - including me. 

As a leader, are you making the goal clear to your team?  Are you even able to show passion for a project that you are asking for others to join?  If not, can you really expect anyone to want to follow?