Traits of Innovation

The Berkeley Innovation Index (BII), has been designed to
    1. Enable people, work-groups, and organizations to measure their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors -- in order to learn how they are correlated with those of successful entrepreneurs and innovators. 
    2. Help people and firms understand their current capacity for innovation.
    3. Diagnose innovation challenges, and enable the development of an innovation mindset.
Following is a general list of recommendations that when adopted will increase your innovation mindset and your innovation capability -- i.e. your BII Score:

TRUST (Belief in Others):  A high Trust score enables teams to function without friction, and adapt well in times of high pressure. As such, the following are some general recommendations for increasing your Trust score
    • Invest in your "emotional bank account." Every time you do something predictable people around, you will learn to trust you back. This is what is called an "emotional deposit."
    • Raise your awareness, identify when you are feeling weary about those around you to reflect and learn. 
    • Stop asking yourself, "what's in it for me?" Remember that trust and building trust is reciprocal -- you have to give it to receive it. 
    • Understand that actions speak louder than words -- be consistent with your behavior. The more similar you act to another person, the more the person will learn to trust you. This allows others to find common ground with you. 
    • Practice trusting yourself by stepping outside of your comfort zone. Extend trust in others in a way that you usually wouldn't. Repeat this exercise.
    • Take care of yourself -- pay attention to your own needs and feelings. Engage in activities that you enjoy and find relaxing. Exercise regularly. Taking care of yourself helps to keep your mind and body primes to deal with situations that require resilience.
RESILIENCE:  Since a high Resilience score correlates with agility and adaptivity, following are some ways to improve upon your Resilience
    • Make connections  -- good relationships with close family members, friends, or others are essential. Accepting help from others strengthens your resilience. 
    • Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable problems. Try looking beyond the present and learn to see how future circumstances maybe a little better. 
    • Accept change -- accepting circumstances that cannot be changed can help you focus on circumstances that you can alter by following up on realistic steps.
    • Take decisive actions rather than detaching completely from problems and stresses and wishing they would disappear. 
    • Sustain a positive view of yourself - developing confidence in your ability to solve problems, and trusting your instincts helps build resilience.
    • Take care of yourself -- pay attention to your own needs and feelings. Engage in activities that you enjoy and find relaxing. Exercise regularly. Taking care of yourself helps to keep your mind and body primes to deal with situations that require resilience
DIVERSITY:  Because a high Diversity score is essential for networking with external partners and onboarding talent, here are a good way to develop your Diversity.
    • Self-awareness is key! Raise your awareness and stay alert. If you notice that you are spending a lot of time talking to people that are most similar to you and agree with your ideas/beliefs/etc. take the time to recognize that those people provide you with the least helpful and new information. 
    • Take classes that will challenge and expose you to different cultures and ethnicities.
    • Practice “hearing” ideas that deviate from your own.  If you do, you may find it easier to consider a variety of new perspectives. 
    • Be curious. Have curiosity about strangers. Curiosity expands our empathy when we talk to people outside of our usual social circle.
    • "Wait and See" -- Don't jump to conclusions! Digest perspectives that are different to yours by reflecting upon the new information that was presented to you. 
BELIEF (Belief in Self):  A high Belief score indicates that the person is convinced that they can carry out almost any task. Since this is such a fundamental part of innovation, here are some ways to increase your Belief score
    • Learn how others succeed through perseverance. This could, in turn, help in your own self-efficacy beliefs about your capabilities to achieve comparable results.
    • Use the power of words -- Verbal confirmation!
      • Tell yourself that you can complete it a task and that you will get it done. 
      • Don’t dwell on self-doubts.
    • Focus on turning 'learning' into 'actively seeking mastery' -- but stay humble and open to new ideas just like a novice.
    • Break goals into small bite-sized pieces that provide the most significant benefits. By doing so, you help develop more confidence in your skills. 
    • Raise your mindfulness! If you find yourself discourages and ready to give up when confronted with a challenge, think about the reason, you are there in the first place. 
    • Set goals slightly above your ability to improve your confidence gradually. Each small gain will build on top of the previous one, and combine into a significant achievement that will increase your self-efficacy.
PERFECTION (Resource Awareness + Allocation):  Since a high Perfection score suggests a person that can strike the balance well within a team, here are some ways to increase your Perfection score
    • Even if you think you have insufficient resources for a project/challenge/hurdle think about the resources that you currently have. Work with what you have and actively focus on your current resources. 
    • Have a routine and take action. Create an action plan to plan, collect, and gather information to take measurable steps towards locating resources. Look to peers/teammates/group members for support to jump-start this process.
    • Seek a mentor that can aid you in identifying when/how you poorly manage your awareness and resource allocation.
    • Find a person that exemplifies the right balance in resource awareness & allocation. First, learn by observing and listening. When you are ready, ask for their guidance in dealing with areas you may not be able to overcome on your own.
COLLABORATION:  Because a high Collaboration score suggests a collective feeling of responsibility and strong alignment to reach mutually-set goals, the following are some recommendations for improving your Collaboration
    • Search outside your own team/group/organization for new ideas, concepts, philosophies, and activities to continually improve and enhance current performance.
    • Build relationships with your teammates -- get to know them! This can help you understand their motivation and how they work as a team. 
    • Define and build a shared purpose that enables people to work together in flexible but disciplined projects.
    • Leverage your particular position, and encourage others around you to do the same. By setting an example, your peers will admire your ability to encourage participation. 
    • Encourage, engage and inspire others to work towards a common goal. By accepting, and accommodating your peer's point of view and accepting their differences your peers will feel comfortable to actively participate in meeting common goals. 
COMFORT ZONE (CZ):  A high CZ score reflects an individual that contributes toward a work-group that can adapt comfortably to changing market conditions, disruptive technologies, and competition. Innovation depends on this flexibility, and as such here are a few ways to increase your CZ score
    • "Play" or "mimic behaviors" of those people around you who can step out of their comfort zone and exhibit a "growth mindset." As you mimic these behaviors, it slowly becomes more and more comfortable for you to do. 
    • Practice Bandura’s step-by-step process called “guided mastery.” Turn fear into familiarity by “building your inner confidence through baby steps.”
      • Take a series of small success 
      • Work through your fears one step at a time.
        • Set a goal and meet and then repeat until you have become comfortable with the level of anxiety.
    • Get over the idea that you need to think through how something is going to work. Don't pre-plan. Jump into something. You will be able to solve problems once you get there. 
    • Practice self-awareness and face reality by seeing both the positive and negatives qualities in areas of growth. 
INNOVATION ZONE (IZ):  High IZ scores reflect the aptitude needed to gain a competitive edge and the ability to associate the brand with innovative and groundbreaking solutions. To increase your IZ score, consider adopting some of the following
    • Practice “effectuation principles” -- start with what you have and understand that sometimes it means you must take in the inventory of what you have first.
    • "Look where others aren't looking to see what others aren't seeing."
    • Develop measurable objectives to know when goals are being archived because you cannot improve what you cannot measure.
    • Truly creative people have developed their ability to observe and use all of their senses - which can get overtime. Take time to “sharpen the blade.”
    • Defer judgment, or your perceptions may limit your reasoning. 
    • Innovation is based on knowledge; therefore, you need to continually expand your knowledge base. Read things you don’t usually read. By actively seeking out new experiences you are "widening your experience portfolio."