Marty Edelston’s Idea Factory
I-Power is an adaptation of the philosophy of W. Edwards Deming, the Bell Labs management genius whom Douglas MacArthur brought to Japan following World War II, and who was, in a large part, responsible for Japan’s massive resurgence as an economic superpower. Each year, Edelston awards more than $100,000 to employees for their ideas.
“I cannot stress enough: In order to foster a flow of ideas, the atmosphere must be totally free of negativity,” Edelston said. “People must feel comfortable about saying things right off the top of their heads, since that’s where some of the best ideas come from.”
A former Boardroom employee said that when she was there, I-Power was somewhat of a nuisance. She took it for granted. But in her new company, she had just as many ideas, but no mechanism is in place to give them a fair hearing or implement them. She was very frustrated.
In the May 26, 2005, issue of Sales Training/Management, Mike Kust wrote:
According to the Delphi Group, a whopping 70% of a company’s knowledge resides solely in employees’ heads. This means knowledge of customers, of the social network of interpersonal internal contacts, of the industry and of processes. It’s know-who. Know-what. And, of course, know-how. And it’s all quite valuable. Some sources say that $6 out of every $7 of market value among S&P 500 companies is accounted for by knowledge assets; intellectual capital typically constitutes 75% of the total balance sheet of companies, and the economic value of knowledge is responsible for 46% of the U.S. gross domestic product.
If you do not have an active I-Power system in place, you are woefully underutilizing your corporate assets.
Incidentally, I-Power spawned a book of the same name, written by Martin Edelston and Marion Buhagiar, which is available in the aftermarket (Amazon.com, Alibris.com, etc.).