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You can make your name in innovation, but that’s just the beginning

There’s no limit to how coaches, consultants, and talent management professionals can utilize the powerful information provided by the ISPI.

Innovation is a goal, but the behaviors that create it also support a range of equally important organizational outcomes. Our Innovation Strengths Preference Indicator® (ISPI™) assessment is used by many corporations, government agencies, educational institutions, and non-profits for a variety of facets of talent development. (Photo: Adobe Stock)


The ISPI assessment has 12 Orientations and 14 scales that makes visible people’s preferred behavioral inclinations for approaching innovation. It can be used to support individual development and to facilitate group processes in: personal growth, team development, leadership development, change management, coaching, decision making, conflict management, coping with stress, and career management.


One aspect of the ISPI is how people prefer to process and act on information in making decisions. For its primary use, organizing innovative teams, this helps group individuals for a balanced combination of pioneers, over a spectrum of degrees, connectors, and builders, also across a spectrum of degrees. This gives practical structure for what can often be a far-ranging imaginative mindscape, so the end results are new ideas that aren’t just creative, but marketable. This defines true innovation.


These same measurements can be applied to coaching an executive to communicate more effectively with his or her team so they can advance. It can also help teams in avoiding or resolving interpersonal conflict. Basically, knowing one’s ISPI results prepares one to interact more effectively with others.


ICS clients demonstrate the range of IPSI applications

Having worked with a broad range of businesses and agencies, from defense systems to greeting cards, Idea Connection Systems has had success applying the ISPI assessment for diverse objectives.


Defense contractor Raytheon uses ISPI for its core purpose: increased innovation.

Raytheon Innovation Challenge Week (RIC) is a five-day event that employs multiple tools and techniques to enhance ideas and discover novel solutions. These include divergence and convergence methods coupled with the expertise of the participants. By the end of the week, ideas are selected for their high potential value.RIC Week teams comprised of over 150 innovators from across the company’s many business units are organized using the ISPI.


NASA sought a comprehensive leadership and culture development process that would also turbocharge innovation like Raytheon.

NASA leaders need a broad range of abilities and skills, but a good level of self-awareness is essential if a manager is to make good use of these capabilities, as is a framework for understanding other people. The ISPI assessment is an extremely useful tool in helping leaders achieve this awareness and is widely used by organizations and independent coaches in leadership development.


The agency considers the ISPI a key tool to improving self-awareness for leadership succession and continuity. And by sharpening its focus toward getting new technology into play, NASA has built a more robust innovation culture.


Coaching is the ISPI application used at Hallmark, where the assessment supports goals of success and longevity through individual advancement and succession.


Using the ISPI as a talent management tool for healthy organizations


The ISPI model is simple and easy to understand, which makes it an ideal tool for understanding other people. The instrument provides an explanation of why different people react very differently to change. It offers a way of helping those people work together effectively.

It’s also valuable for building self-awareness – the assessment and interpretation process provide an opportunity for personal exploration that is difficult to achieve with other assessments.


For individuals, understanding their own decision-making preferences can help them see both the positives, and the possible drawbacks, in the way they normally do things. They may discover the advantages of utilizing alternative processes. When used in teams the ISPI assessment helps avoid stifling "groupthink” in favor of creativity.


Conflict can be better navigated as people see what their stress triggers are and how to avoid or ameliorate the effects of those triggers. The ISPI describes one's likely reaction to everyday stress and to more extreme situations in which individuals may behave in atypical ways. Knowing this information allows them to recognize this reaction and act to approach conflict in a more productive way, resolving conflict more effectively.


By better understanding group chemistry, organizations make the innovation processes much more productive. And, as we’ve seen, this understanding enhances just about any corporate initiative that depends on people working together harmoniously, effectively, and successfully.



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