“[Organizations] should be more afraid of what they know than of what they don’t know. What you know is inherently limiting,” says Karen Morris, former chief innovation officer at AIG, who’s now a senior fellow at ILO Institute.
Like many execs charged with driving innovation, Morris focuses more on fixing what impedes innovation than what enables it, because she believes the impediments are the bigger problem. One strategy is to identify what an organization can say it “knows” and then attack that knowledge by imagining what it could prevent leaders from seeing.
When building an organization’s innovation IQ, Morris especially values people who have “soft science” degrees. Jeremy Allaire, founder of the online video firm Brightcove, agrees. In college, he majored in philosophy and political science.
“If I can understand those,” he tells the Boston Business Journal, “I can understand a lot about how the world operates.”