Why would a company pull an entire team away from their regular jobs to spend the day working on a project of their choice? Surprisingly, this is an idea with a proven track record of success. Organizations worldwide are adopting this “innovations day” practice to improve processes, drive revenue and increase employee engagement and retention.

What is a “FedEx Day?”

FedEx day originated with an Australian software company named Atlassian. In a nutshell, it is a day devoted to innovation. Company participants are given a 24-hour period in which they step away from their daily responsibilities and instead focus on innovation. The catch? They must deliver ideas overnight. Hence the name.

Participants are expected to come up with a new product, service or improve a process. At the end of that 24-hour period, individuals or groups present their innovation day ideas to the rest of the team.

Here are eight reasons why your company should try a “FedEx Innovations Day.”

Encourage creativity. Your employees are your best source of new ideas. As insiders, they can observe what could be improved within the company, and with a little time, offer solutions.

Solve problems. When people are constantly busy putting out fires, nagging issues or inefficient processes are often moved to the back burner. Setting time aside to brainstorm these problems now can save even more time or money in the future.

Produce immediate value. With an imperative to produce a deliverable by the end of the project, companies may be surprised by the immediately actionable ideas that are produced. Just one profitable idea can be enough to justify taking a whole team away from their jobs for a day.

Improve employee engagement. Nothing tells employees they are valued more than allowing them to spend an entire day creating a new idea that’s got a real chance of making an impact on the company’s future. Who would leave a company where you are so deeply entrenched?

Strengthen your teams. Innovators can work together on a project, getting to know each other outside the normal daily structure. Even those who work alone will gain a new respect for the creativity of their co-workers.

Launch new products. It’s entirely possible that you will end the day with something that can produce immediate or future revenue for your organization – revenue you might never have otherwise seen.

Shake out the cobwebs. In today’s busy, multitasking world, the opportunity to just think comes along rarely. Spending a day just on innovation is a great way to refresh the team.

Encourage future innovation. Once your team is in a creative mindset, they will keep an open mind going forward to look for new ways to bring value to the company in the future.

Looking for ideas that will help you innovate within your company or be more effective with your hiring efforts? The executive search consultants at BrainWorks can help. Contact us today to learn more.

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