and answer session with unconference attendees.
The ideas shared at the unconference were summarized in a whitepaper, which is now available for download by all interested Commerce employees. The discussions throughout the unconference covered a broad range of subjects, but a common theme emerged: when it comes to innovation within a large organization, a lot of things matter beyond merely what technology is in use; measures matter, relationships matter, culture matters, shared tools matter, and how we are organized matters.
The whitepaper presents numerous insights and recommendations that approach the topic of innovation within the Department from a variety of angles. As members of LINC, we concur, however, with the strategic plan’s warning that “launching multiple improvement initiatives across a broad scope of areas will create activity but not necessarily progress.” These insights and recommendations should therefore be taken as a snapshot and a sampling of efforts that are already being made and ideas that contribute to (rather than distract from) the key strategies for operational excellence identified in the strategic plan.
How the unconference whitepaper fits into the Department’s innovation process
In 2011, the Partnership for Public Service set out a process for innovation that starts with a commitment to innovation and defining agency high-priority performance goals—two steps already completed as part of the adoption of the most recent strategic plan.
• Build a learning organization
• Create a 21st century IT infrastructure
• Manage for results.
We believe that committing the resources and attention of the Department to these recommendations and others like them will allow us to better fulfill our duty to the public. We invite you to share your thoughts regarding the whitepaper in the comments section below.