The new production of knowledge is a prerequisite for innovative behaviour (described in the book The Knowledge-Creating Company: How Japanese Companies Create the Dynamics of Innovation ) so any tools and processes that help should be grasped by innovation teams everywhere.
We can connect Edgar Schein theories, Donald Schon's Reflection in action to Serious Play and Gaming using iterative capital as a resource for exploring, learning and change.
I referred to protected play space as a means to reduce learning anxiety in this post. In Serious Play Michael Schrage talks of shared space:
"Conversations don’t have memories; only their participants do. ... In most conversations, people take turns exchanging information, not sharing it. In most conversations, the absence of memory means a useful phrase or expression can be distorted or lost. ... It takes shared space to create understandings. Conversation is vital, but it isn’t enough."
The shared space can be a tangible representation of an idea- for instance a sketch, simulation, digital model, physical prototype, etc. Successful innovation demands more than a good strategic plan; it requires creative improvisation. Much of the "serious play" that leads to breakthrough innovations is increasingly linked to experiments with models, prototypes, and simulations. As digital technology makes prototyping more cost-effective, serious play will soon lie at the heart of all innovation strategies, influencing how businesses define themselves and their markets.
One digital technology that has a place in behaviour change in shared space must include is a generalised simulation tool called Gaming.
"The practice and production of game design enables a type of reflection in action that supports good learning. This approach has been mirrored over the years in the development of products like Mindstorms and open-source tools and programming languages like Logo, Squeak, Scratch, and Alice designed to teach procedural thinking, problem solving, and logic, by learning to program. Seymour Papert and Michel Resnick pioneered thinking about how the acquisition of a programming language empowers a person to model knowledge and to see the world as a system of interconnected parts. Gamestar Mechanic shares in this approach not by teaching the language of programming but the language of game design........ If you buy Raph Koster's argument in his book, A Theory of Fun, you'll agree that the reason why we play games is because games teach us patterns in low stakes situations that we can then apply to real world situations as necessary.
This sounds like the Kolb learning cycle, but we are, in fact, invoking a different learning cycle where we are in an unstable environment, where reflecting on what we know to make sense of things is only an insufficient part of the story. Today organizations are faced with accelerating rates of scientific and technological change, which combine with global media and communication to ensure that fashions, ideas, products and services spread like wildfire. Whilst there is no substitute for business competence, efficiency and cost control, businesses also has to deliver “value” to the consumers. That is something that consumers, existing or new, will find desirable.
To deliver to such demanding consumers innovations that matter to them requires building new knowledge from emerging patterns of consumer insights, societal trends, individuals' behaviours that together with emerging and improving technologies challenge the best of us. Collaborative teams that behave in a common cause use their total knowledge deconstructed and reconstructed in interesting ways ensure that timely solutions to emergent problems are more easly managed. Such edge behaviours need different frameworks to give form to such possibility. The Design Journey is a process that enables individuals to work across disciplinary and organisational boundaries to form a collaborative team supporting them as they embark on an uncertain journey across the competitive landscape
Re-Thinking how their project connects with the overall business objectives;
Deciding the project Strategy and way forward.
Discovering motivating Insights that enable the team to generate a collaboratively create a vision for the project outcome.
Re-Energising the team, its clients and the consumers by
Demonstrating valid Prototypes and then deploying viable products and services that are highly valued by the consumers who experience them.
To allow new combinatorial knowledge to emerge we must have process that embraces four principles, known as the 4 S's:
To expand our thinking leading across a broader range of opportunities.
To reduce unnecessary complexity and to focus on delivering excellent consumer experiences