Exchange on Innovation: Define and Visualize New (Innovative) Practices
The Executive Exchange provides nonprofit leaders an opportunity to network & share information, and to learn new approaches to solve issues
*This session will be held via Zoom. Meeting details will be e-mailed to you once you have registered.*
Innovation is more relevant today than ever before. NICNE’s Executive Exchange on Innovation helps area leaders network and share information, learn new ideas and approaches to solve complex issues, and foster a culture of sustained innovation in their organization. Join NICNE and other nonprofit leaders to learn about what it takes to build and strengthen an innovative organization—to achieve breakthroughs, consider new approaches and ideas, and move a concept from idea to implementation.
October's session will focus on identifying and building new practices. We will spend 90 minutes exploring the building of new practices or services by examining the concept of Paying Forward . We will engage in brainstorming, refine generated ideas, and use design thinking tools to build a plan for a new idea. Afterwards, we will share our ideas with the group.
We will discuss:
-What does building a new (innovative) practice look like?
What is Paying Forward? (Not to be confused with Pay-It-Forward, the concept of Paying Forward has different audiences, and different impact).
-What might Paying Forward mean to your organization?
-How might you apply this idea to build a new service or product at your organization?
This session is intended to further de-mystify the innovation process and help you "think outside the box" within the context of your organization and operational processes.
WHAT IS PAYING FORWARD? Paying forward is simple.
You pay for something that you can afford today (say, a product or service), and someone else in need can then use that product or service that has been already paid for. Applying this concept, an organization becomes the clearinghouse where people can Pay Forward toward the costs or needs of others, and those in need can receive the available goods or services that have been paid for; Paying Forward has the dual benefit of encouraging everyone to contribute to the betterment of society, even if their gift is small, and removing the potential shame-inducing component of receiving help from others in the community; No one should have to feel bad about receiving help.
Aparna Saligrama, PhD, facilitator, recently joined the NICNE team contributing a wealth of knowledge and experience about using design thinking and social innovation.
Activities and tools will help you to:
• Learn new ideas and processes to build capacities for sustained innovation;
• Approach problems in new ways to improve outcomes and increase social impact;
• Incorporate elements of innovation into daily thinking and organizational processes;
• Exchange ideas and create prototypes to solve complex social challenges;
• Leave with design thinking tools and actionable steps to foster a culture of sustained innovation and cross-sector collaboration;
• Connect with other nonprofit leaders.
Each 60-minute exchange will begin with a brief overview or exercise related to a critical component of building a culture of sustained innovation. The session will end with an open exchange to engage, network, and collaborate with other local leaders and innovators. The first six sessions will focus on the six elements of building innovative capacity within your organization as described in the Bridgespan Group article, “Is Your Nonprofit Built for Sustained Innovation.”
In 2017, The Bridgespan Group surveyed the leaders of 145 nonprofit organizations; Nearly 80 percent reported that their organizations aspire to innovate and the majority reported that innovation is critical for their organization for a variety to reasons. Almost 60% need to identify new funding streams, almost 40% need to adapt to changing political or regulatory environments, and more than half believe that without effective innovation, they simply won’t be able to achieve the impact they seek.
Exchange Facilitator: Aparna Saligrama, PhD
Aparna is a social innovation researcher and consultant who works to help clients understand and incorporate socially innovative approaches into everything that they do. Dr. Saligrama works on a broad range of issues; from creating new socially innovative approaches for existing products or service lines, designing new ventures, setting up new companies, to creating intra-organizational readiness for innovation. She also works with clients to develop innovative approaches for internal processes, builds content and messaging, creates metrics and designs impact assessments based on client need and industry-type, and creates systems maps to understand problems and to identify impact gaps.
Quiet Value is a knowledge platform created and curated by Dr. Saligrama to understand the process of social innovation through providing space for organizations and entrepreneurs from around the world to convene and share their own creative processes and approaches to social innovation.
Dr. Saligrama began her career as an architect, having practiced in India and the UK, before earning a master’s degree in Design Management from Birmingham City University. She went on to earn a PhD from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign where her research focused on how healthcare organizations can increase overall community wellness through socially innovative systemic approaches that go beyond providing direct medical care. Following her studies, she was a Research Associate with Ashoka before starting her own venture, Quiet Value Consulting . Aparna lives in Loves Park, IL with her family, and consults and travels globally for her work in social innovation.