Managing by making mistakes!
What inhibits most companies from being innovative is the fear their employees have of making a mistake. That fear kills innovation! What we need is management (read HR) to encourage a thought process that encourages risk taking.
"Dont be afraid to make mistakes" is what they should encourage, but the risk should have been taken while trying something innovative.
At GE Jack Welch did it by setting stretch targets, targets so high that if one did not think unconventionally they would not be able to achieve it. Managers were not given disincentives for not achieving stretch targets, but were given heavy bonuses for achieving the stretch targets.
An MBA should teach students to be like this, my Strategy Professor always says, I want you all to be "real" MBAs, and I know that he is trying to tell me, "Son, don’t be afraid to make mistakes ".
“One successful internal entrepreneur told me that the secret to making things happen is not to get hit in the face in the same spot when management slams the door. You have to continue to approach an idea from different angles“- Neal Thornberry, Tapping the Internal Entrepreneur, BW