Ever wondered how to ignite that much-needed spark of innovation in a large, established company? Want to learn how to navigate resistance to new ideas and create an environment that fosters creativity and innovation? Join us as we delve into these fascinating topics with our guest, Alma Derricks from Korn Ferry Consulting. We discuss the importance of stepping outside the comfort zone and embracing change, drawing from Alma’s early internet days of creating websites and helping cool clients like Peanuts, Star Trek, and Blue Man Group transition to online.

How do we push past traditional boundaries to create something truly groundbreaking? Alma shares powerful insights on managing existing budgets and gaining stakeholder buy-in, while also highlighting the importance of taking responsibility for creative ideas and embracing side hustles as a means of experimentation. We’ll explore how she pushed back against traditional industries to reclaim online rights, a bold move that made waves in the corporate world.

Finally, we challenge the traditional work script, debating whether hard work is really a prerequisite for meaningful work. Alma and I discuss the potential of valuing instinct and talent over sheer hard work, and how flipping the 80-20 rule to prioritize interesting work can yield far better results. We’ll also share an example of how a seemingly simple solution solved a complex problem, emphasizing the importance of looking at situations from different perspectives. So, if you’re ready to shake up your work routine, find personal fulfillment, and explore new opportunities within your company, this episode is packed with insights and stories that are sure to inspire.

(0:00:21) – Spark Innovation in Large Companies (12 Minutes)

Alma discusses how to spark playfulness and innovation in existing large companies. We joke about Star Trek and Johnny Carson, and I find out that Alma’s career has been about taking companies to the edge of the company that they’ve already been in. She starts by talking about how she got into the business and the pressure she often faced while working with entertainment brands. We discuss the importance of taking risks and embracing change to create something new. Alma talks about her experience with the internet, creating websites and helping them transition online. We explore how a little bit of playfulness and risk-taking can help companies navigate change and innovate.

(0:11:59) – Navigating Resistance to New Ideas (7 Minutes)

Alma shares how to create an environment of playfulness and innovation in larger companies. We explore the dynamics of taking away from existing budgets and the challenges of getting buy-in from stakeholders. Alma shares her experience of pushing back against newspapers to reclaim online rights for her new venture, and we discuss the importance of taking responsibility for creative ideas and pursuing side hustles for experimentation.

(0:19:24) – Creating Work You Love, Finding Environment (7 Minutes)

Alma and I discuss the difficulty of unlearning the notion that hard work is necessary for creating meaningful work. We explore how a surgeon can do something in five minutes that someone else spent hours preparing for, and how to find an environment that values your instinct and talent. We also look at flipping the script of 80% hard work and 20% interesting work to 80% interesting and 20% hard work, which can yield far greater results. Finally, we share an example of how Alma solved a difficult problem with a seemingly simple solution.

(0:26:24) – Exploring New Opportunities Within Your Company (9 Minutes)

Alma and I discussed the importance of taking action to shake things up and energize yourself at work. We looked at the idea of a side hustle and how you can use it to gain more financial security and personal fulfillment. We also explored the idea of gamifying your own work and taking personal responsibility for it. Finally, we emphasized the importance of having something outside of your job that you can dedicate your time and energy to.