Being specific about where to focus your attention and spend your time is essential in creating an innovation-capable culture. With a clear understanding of the current state of your organization the choices you make may do more harm than good, or at the very least be an ineffective use of your resources. By choosing specific assessments that can be tailored to meet the needs of your organization we can determine the current circumstances and begin to map our path forward. Assessment tools include, but are not limited to:

Social Network Analysis

Social network analysis views social relationships in terms of network theory consisting of nodes and ties (also called edges, links, or connections). Nodes are the individual actors (your team members) within the networks, and ties are the relationships between the actors. The resulting graph-based structures are often very complex. There can be many kinds of ties between the nodes. Research in a number of academic fields has shown that social networks operate on many levels and play a critical role in determining the way problems are solved, organizations are run, and the degree to which individuals succeed in achieving their goals. By conducting a social network analysis we can identify the key roles in your organization to improve innovation effectiveness: experts, brokers, and advocates.

In its simplest form, a social network is a map of specified ties, such as friendship, between the nodes being studied. The nodes to which an individual is thus connected are the social contacts of that individual. The network can also be used to measure social capital – the value that an individual gets from the social network. These concepts are often displayed in a social network diagram, where nodes are the points and ties are the lines.

Human Synergistics International – OCI/OCE Assessments

The Organizational Culture Inventory® (OCI®) is used to validate the need for change on the part of organizational members. It aids in planning and monitoring organizational development programs. The results obtained help design supporting programs to enhance member engagement, organizational learning, and innovation. It also can aid in facilitating mergers, acquisitions, and strategic alliances

The Organization Effective Inventory® (OEI) is used to measure the satisfaction and motivation of employees, coordination within and across units, departmental and organizational-level quality, and related dimensions of performance. It aids in identifying systems, structures, technologies, and other “levers for change” to increase effectiveness at the individual, unit, and organizational levels. It supports tailoring change initiatives to address the specific needs of work groups, departments, divisions and their members in developing a more innovation-capable culture over time. And it provides data to ensure monitoring the impact of organizational change initiatives over time.

Force Field Analysis

Force field analysis is a tool developed in the field of social science. It provides a framework for looking at the factors (forces) that influence a situation, originally social situations. It looks at forces that are either driving movement toward a goal (helping forces) or blocking movement toward a goal (hindering forces).

The principle, developed by Kurt Lewin, has been a significant contribution to the fields of social science, psychology, social psychology, organizational development, process management, and change management. It offers insights into what kinds of barriers might exist that prevent an organization from developing a more innovation capable culture.

SWOT Analysis

SWOT analysis is a planning method used to evaluate the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats involved in a project or in an organization initiative. It involves specifying the objective of the initiative or project and identifying the internal and external factors that are favorable and unfavorable to achieve that objective.

A SWOT analysis must first start with defining a desired end state or objective. A SWOT analysis may be incorporated into the innovation planning model. Each element of the SWOT offers a different perspective on the organization as it relates to innovation. Taken together it offers a systems view:

Strengths: characteristics of the business or team that give it an advantage over others in the industry.
Weaknesses: are characteristics that place the firm at a disadvantage relative to others.
Opportunities: external chances to make greater sales or profits in the environment.
Threats: external elements in the environment that could cause trouble for the business.

Identification of SWOTs is essential because subsequent steps in the process of planning for achievement of the selected innovation objective may be derived from the SWOTs.