Will I be the Innovator forever?

I love to embrace new ideas, some would say a bit too much, others would say I challenge them and provide valuable input. I enjoy trying out the latest technologies as well as methodologies. Thanks to Linda Rising I also know that people are not rational – hence if everyone doesn’t buy in on my suggestions all the time, I know I could always try another approach (e.g. feed people chocolate chip cookies..).

However, I learned at the university (especially from Endre Sjøvold)  that members of a mature team does not step into static roles. They adapt to their environment, and acts out the roles that are necessary at specific points in time. So if I find myself taking on the role of being an Innovator for most of the time, does that mean I’m part of an immature team? If so, am I a mature as a person, and as I spot the lack of an Innovator I take on that role? Or do I just do it because I have a preference for taking on the role of being an Innovator? And could that stop me from being a sceptic (or in Linda’s terms, I think; a Laggard) when it is needed of me?

Working as a software consultant in the financial industry, I’ve discovered most people doesn’t tend to take on the roles of being Innovators. But what would happen if I were put in a team where everybody loved being Innovators? Would I put on a more conservative hat when needed? I believe it would be possible for me to do that, but I’m of course afraid that my passion for learning new things would challenge me on that. I think it would be especially hard for me to take on a long term role of being more conservative. Hopefully my other team members would have relieved me from my duties from time to time, since they would be just as mature as me (probably even more :).


One Response to “Will I be the Innovator forever?”

  1. joshilewis Says:

    This is an interesting question. I have also discovered that I am an ‘Innovator’, as you call it. Questioning everything, always trying to find a better way and always trying to keep an eye on what other people are doing in the wide world.

    My problem is that I feel completely unqualified to always be the Innovator in the team. I often feel like I work in a vacuum, and do not have the required leadership and guidance or even sounding boards and peers in my places of work. I don’t want to feel like the most ‘senior’ in a team, though try as I may, I can’t seem to avoid it.

    I recently spent a fair amount of time looking for the right job for me. I was unemployed for about 3 months. Unfortunately, I’ve just about come to the conclusion that the kind of environment I’m looking for doesn’t necessarily exist (in my geographical area).

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