1 Contesting（even opposing）in politics, or military, can not only facilitate social progress in terms of science and technology, liberty and democracy and so on, but also have devastating consequences, such as bloodbath.
2 putting some reasonable restriction on contesting for innovation will effectively maximize its benefits and minimize its damages.
3 Under a reasonable tripartite contest for innovation, each incumbent manager should simultaneously face challenges from two assigned candidates to dispute, and to contest, based on an informal web-based community or forum.
4 Here the reasonable is to have a whole set of rules and procedures for contesting, to treat impartially all participants, and to be helpful to raise productivities and improve performance.
5 To make sure that reasonable tripartite contest can work well, companies need to pay close attention to enlisting and training creative talents, evaluating performance, and eliminating the inferior ones.
How to draw on strengths of a competitive two-party system to stimulate innovation and creativity in business?
What does a reasonable tripartite contest for innovation look like?
Its three key characteristics are described as follows:
First, it is a contest for innovation.
This contest will be dedicated to innovation. All participants on both sides will be asked or inspired to aggressively find what is bad or wrong today, and to proactively consider how to resolve them tomorrow in each business unit or section.
Like the United States presidential election debates on TV, this contest would be regularly held on a web-based community or forum, which is a part of an informal web-based organization mentioned in my previous post “Yin-Yang Organization for Innovation”.
To avoid distraction, all participants on the informal web-based community should be kept from doing other things unrelated to innovation, such as sharing, learning, and not to mention spreading false news.
Second, it is a tripartite contest for innovation.
Each incumbent manager at all levels needs to accept at the same time two creative talents’ challenges. In other words, contest not only exists between incumbent manager and two assigned creative talents, but also exists between two assigned creative talents.
It is important to keep in mind that these two assigned creative talents are not two assistant managers for incumbent manager. They have no formal authority or responsibility to assist incumbent managers in daily operation. As other ordinary employees, these two creative talents have their own specific jobs to do. So they engage in innovation during off hours.
Third, it is a reasonable tripartite contest for innovation.
It must be strictly controlled and monitored by an entire set of formal rules and procedures. For example, on the informal web-based community, all participants on both sides will be given an exclusive username, which can be traced by back-end as they violate rules and procedures, to register in.
It is fair for all participants without formal title and authority on the informal web-based community as instituting rules and procedures, and evaluating a variety of proposals and suggestions.
It must be beneficial for companies’ growth and development, in other words, the most important criteria to determine who is winner is whether he or she can achieve business results for companies.
Apparently, such a reasonable tripartite contest for innovation will be a disintegrator for companies to destroy the outdated production and technique, a excavating machine for companies to release employees’ potential in innovating, an incubator for companies to build up a culture of innovation, and a midwife for companies to help deliver creative talents.