Create a Culture of Innovation


Denise Button is founder and principal consultant of Colourful Language, providing strategic communications around innovation, culture change and business excellence to a number of organisations Australia-wide.

Innovation is not a rare quality inherent in a lucky few; it’s a way of thinking and behaving—and it is an organisation’s job is to foster the right culture to unleash its employees’ innovative tendencies.

There’s no single method to creating a culture of innovation. Establishing one, and making it stick, needs to be unique to each organisation. But for every organisation it starts with the right mindset, which must begin at the top and permeate every level. And most importantly, it includes the beliefs, expectations, and sense of purpose of those in the organisation.

And while strong, senior-level leadership is crucial, lower-level leadership should be enablers of innovation; guiding and supporting teams along the innovation path and, at times, challenging their own paradigms.

Members of an organisation’s internal and external community often have tremendous insights and ideas that lead to new innovations. Sometimes the greatest innovations come from novices. Often, employees are more likely to put ideas forward if they have the safety-net of job security to fall back on, including a supportive culture which accepts that failure is a part of life, business, and the innovation process.

Innovation thrives in a culture that is supportive of risk-taking, promotes the value of experimenting, is adaptable and rewards enterprise.

For further information about this article, feel free to contact Denise by emailing

Image sourced from luminastock/123RF.