Scott Hodge


Tough Times = Breeding Ground for Innovation

Dec 1, 2009

No one enjoys having a lack of resources.  Yet, it's often times that lack that ends up pushing us into greater avenues of creativity and innovation.  If we allow it to.

I remember when we had absolutely NO discretionary money or resources to do anything other than pay our bills (barely) and sometimes our staff. The bottom line was that if we wanted to do something, we pretty much had to pay for it out of our own pockets (we still do sometimes) or figure out some other creative way to get it done.  (Side note, it's amazing how differently we think about spending when it comes out of our own pockets isn't it?

In many regards, that was a very tough and draining season.  Yet at the same time….it was also a season where I watched the innovative muscles of our team stretch and grow in some amazing ways.  And to a large degree, I would credit those days as being a huge factor in what's helped us sustain a culture of innovation at The Orchard today.

So here's a question/comment that's been on my mind a lot lately…

Leaders, how are we taking advantage of not having "enough" right now? 

Which direction is your "lack" pushing you these days?  Deeper into MENTAL LACK?  Or…..deeper into the world of creativity & innovation?  

Let's make sure we aren't
allowing our current situation to move us into a "poverty" or "lacking"
mentality.  Instead, let's keep the bar raised and expectations high. 
Let's continue casting vision and articulating what could be – even if the resources don't yet exist.  And instead of saying "NO" – what if we said things like, "If you can figure out a way to make it happen, go for it!"  Or BETTER YET….what if we actually challenged and empowered our teams to find ways to make it happen!  Seriously, you'll be surprised at the innovation that will surface. 

I suck at math, but I'm in the mood to create a formula, so I leave you with this:

LACK OF RESOURCES + HIGH EXPECTATIONS + EMPOWERED TEAM = CRAZY BREEDING GROUND FOR INNOVATION  (i.e. figuring out ways to get things done in a completely different way than before)

Leaders, I'd love to hear how you're intentionally fostering an innovative environment in your organization.

6 Responses to “Tough Times = Breeding Ground for Innovation”

  1. Steven Fogg says:

    Hey Scott,
    great blog! I think we can kill innovation by being too comfortable or just darn lazy. Or even worse still – just look at what others are doing and “be inspired”
    I just posted my latest blog on this point exactly! The No.1 Communications Killer (And How To Defeat It).
    Kudos to you from Melbourne, Australia.

  2. This is great stuff Scott. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Great post, Scott! Very timely for us too. Thanks for posting it.

  4. Colleen Wenner says:

    Wow, this really opens my mind to look for more possibilities and create more creativity, if that makes sense, in our children’s ministry teams. Thanks for knocking down the glass ceiling so to speak!

  5. tom roepke says:

    scott…i’m thinking your math is pretty good. the formula is excellent…great post. we’ve been living in the reality that God has given all we need to do ministry. we’re having fun…right now thinking it through. looking forward to what others are doing.

  6. Paul says:

    Sweet post Scott.
    With hope

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