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Do You Simply Do Your Job, Or Do You Improve Your Job?

A friend of mine used to work at a company that required a new idea every week on how to improve the business.  And every week, he would have desperate coworkers asking him if he had any ideas they could “borrow” to share at the meeting.  I always thought that this story highlighted two fundamentally different types of workers:  Those that simply did their job, and those that not only did their job, but managed to improve it at the same time.  That’s not to say there isn’t value in simply doing your job, but there is vastly more value in someone who brings innovation to the table, as well.  Unfortunately, I think many businesses don’t foster that innovation and “business creativity” to transform their employees from the first category to the second. I think those with high levels of business creativity have learned how to see the world in terms of inefficiencies and opportunities.  In other words, they realize that things can always be done better, and are always asking, “What if we tried ________?”  This could be a small change, such as moving a community printer to a more centralized area to reduce travel time.  Or it could mean completely new ideas that spin off of the main core service of the company.  For example, another friend of mine owns a lawn mowing business, which he operates in a very straight forward manner.  But I came to him with this idea:  Why not build templates of sports team’s logos to put on the l......
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