With all the innovation success stories and Tipping Point-esque advice swirling around corporate culture, members of any workplace have found themselves in a very specific predicament for at least the last 15 or 20 years. Namely, being caught between a rock (the much touted “Dare to take risks” attitude) and a hard place (the unspoken but definitely implied “Don’t screw up”). We all want to showcase our talent and get rewarded for it. However, it seems that the stakes and the level of ingenuity needed to receive recognition are higher than ever before. It’s gotten to the point where the term “thinking outside the box” is so clichéd that it ironically is now inside the box.
Being reckless and being too safe are both bad ideas (and both are sure to put your job in jeopardy), but what can you do? Try new ideas, but be prudent. One key is never betting more than you can afford to lose (hello banking industry? NYSE?). Another is constantly testing the viability of an idea, so you and your team can pull out before things get too costly.
According to this article from HR Daily Advisor
, taking at least some kind of action is better than sitting around and thinking “what if?” FDR would agree, as he said “It is common sense to take a method and try it. If it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something.” Good management won’t unfairly punish an employee just for failing, and will recognize that every venture, successful or no, is a learning opportunity.