This paper presents four research projects on organizational innovation in the Netherlands. These projects are still in a design and theoretical investigation stage, but the authors find it useful to share their findings and insights with the research community in order to inspire them with their ideas and research agenda. In the paper four constructs are explored that focus on the human factor in organizations and that may have a positive influence on organizational innovation.
Shared leadership: It is often thought that, for innovation, only one brilliant mind with a break-through idea in a single flash of enlightenment is needed. Recent research, however, shows that most innovations are the result of team-flow and sharing and alternating leadership tasks.
Social Capital: through leadership and decision making, by influencing trust, respect and commitment, the organizations social capital and thus its innovative power is increased.
External consultancy: deployment of external consultants will add to knowledge and skills necessary for innovation.
IT and workflow management: if handled correctly, the human factor can add substantial quality to the design and use of IT in organizations.
The paper shows that the way these constructs are managed is crucial in influencing and motivating members of an organization to attribute to innovation and make use of the facilities that are offered to them.