Nov 28, 2023
Innovative thinking doesn’t just happen. It’s a muscle that needs to be built. And when your business relies on flexing its ability to solve problems, everybody throughout the organization, needs to get as many reps as they can.
With this mindset, we introduced Weekly Thrills to our organization. It's a weekly thought exercise meant to energize and engage everyone, from top to bottom. The goal is to encourage people to think beyond their job titles, fostering a culture of innovation, leadership, and ownership at Thrillworks. This also reinforces our company culture of consistently challenging what’s been done before.
The rules and requirements are quite simple:
Identify an everyday problem. Any problem.
Propose a solution that leverages web-based technology.
Include some executional and impact details.
Present your work at our Weekly all-staff meeting.
Every week, a randomly assigned group of three identifies an opportunity of their choosing and brainstorms solutions for it. Think about it.
Every week your Marketing, Operations, and Engineering departments could be coming up with a solution for more sustainable farming practices in third-world countries, your Creative, Client Services, and HR teams could be helping communities track the nearest location of the ice cream truck or your Creative, Technology and Operations teams could create a platform that makes the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) a source where patients can find a doctor.
All of these are real examples of what our teams have imagined. In fact, it’s been remarkable to see just how much variety is presented. They’re just as unique and valuable as the people developing them.
The exercise is not about what the ideas are, but that they are regularly happening across the organization. It’s about building that muscle—along with several others.
Beyond fueling our problem-solving capabilities and discovering great ideas in places we often overlook, Weekly Thrills has become an entertaining and incredible way to reinforce company values of curiosity, courage, unity and passion.
Curiosity and passion are actually the easy ones, they’re part of what we look for when screening candidates to join our team. You might assume that courage would be easy to identify as well, but effectively trying, failing, and presenting conceptual work on demand takes practice and mental fortitude (just ask any creative).
Unity is the big one. Core to our philosophy is that the best outcomes happen when we work together. Weekly Thrills has become a driver of real collaboration, creating real cohesion and strengthening our team as one.
So, while it’s all well and good for companies to boast about how innovative they are, or how problem-solving is in their DNA, the reality is that every company can simply say that. I’d argue that approaching innovative thinking as a muscle to be strengthened is part of a culture; one that needs to be exercised and nourished. The question we all should be asking, is what are we doing to ensure that mentality runs throughout an entire organization—regardless of title or tool.
So, think about the qualities you’re looking for in a partner. Chances are, we already have a few thrilling ideas ready to be flexed. Reach out and we’d love to tell you more.