“Start-up: the act or an instance of setting in operation or motion” -Merriam Webster Dictionary
Innovation Diploma a start-up. We continue to use this concept as our framework as we design and iterate the program. iD is currently entering Phase II of our Start-up life. We’ve established our team, explored our strengths, curiosities and passions, and now we’re at a point where we have to focus on fleshing out our business plan. Most people know you have to experiment to discover the right business model – and while sometimes the changes are simple, often it’s hard work to get your entire organization to adopt and make bigger changes that require extra time, money or intellectual capital.
What I’m proud of is that we focused so much on building our team and connecting with one another that we are already highly invested in the “business” of iD. That is critical to any business model – your team has to be a team. Secondly, it’s incredibly important to find your organizational focus. Identify one thing your organization does best and set your goal. Put 100 percent of your efforts on that single goal to widen your impact. In Phase I, we did an incredible amount of exploration and testing our skills. We didn’t say “no” to many opportunities, and we focused more on breadth over depth. In Phase II, we need to pare down and focus on what truly matters. We are about to experience intense focus by entering a two-week design sprint on our current coVenture. After our sprint, we will press the pause button and recalibrate. I will facilitate a few days that will help each Cohort member truly nail down what truly matters. At this point, I think iD is going to make some huge leaps. Stay tuned for updates:)
Just because we have a program that works right now doesn’t mean we should be complacent and think “this is it!” Like any startup, we will continue to roll out and test new features or program delivery models. A startup is an organization working to solve a problem where the solution is not obvious and success is not guaranteed – Because of this, we can never stop innovating.
Here are some we’re testing right now:
- Using Folio Collaborative with each Cohort member as a growth, evaluation, and feedback tool.
- Setting a February deadline for every Cohort member to secure a mentor or invested expert in the field.
- Setting an expectation that all iD members publicly share their work.