Paul Dombowsky is the founder and CEO of Ideavibes and the charity crowdfunding initiative Fundchange. Today he talks with IM about the importance of listening to the less-heard voices and the inspiring influence open communication is having in the workplace as well as in our communities.

What is innovation management to you?

I see innovation management as the process of capitalizing on the energy and wisdom of the crowd to solve problems, build better products, and spark change in our communities. I don’t see it as just a business construct but something that can be a part of many aspects of our working and non-working lives.

What are the most important lessons for an innovation manager to learn?

From where I sit, communication, management of the innovation process and willingness to hear from the fringe are critical lessons to learn and integrate into how they proceed with their mandate. Communication is of course the foundation of any endeavour but the fact that innovation can come from anywhere – making the process user friendly and open gives you the opportunity to hear from voices that often don’t get heard and this is where real creative sparks can come from.

Do you think innovation management as a profession is headed in the right direction?

I have to preface my answer by saying I am new to this field, but I see this as one of the most exciting areas to be involved in right now. I especially feel this way because of how public institutions, long bastions of resistance to change and innovation, are embracing innovation management with varying degrees of comfort and success.

The key is to support organizations such as yours to further the thought leadership but also the foundations so more and more people make innovation a part of how they look at problems in their workplace and in their communities. I see a real opportunity here to make the big changes that are needed by educating people about innovation and the processes and tools around it.

What’s your next big challenge?

My next challenge for Ideavibes is to use the feedback I am getting from our early clients to improve the platform we have developed around innovation management so it benefits our clients more and more every day. Personally, I also need to learn more about the field to be more of a credible resources for organizations, especially in the non-profit areas that I enjoy helping out in.

About Paul Dombowsky

Paul Dombowsky is the founder and CEO of Ideavibes and the charity crowdfunding initiative Fundchange. Paul started Ideavibes after over fifteen years in marketing roles at various technology or related firms. His expertise with web marketing, social media, and marketing automation, as well as keen interest in how social networks are now influencing all aspects of product development and marketing, laid the foundation for building a lean web app company.  Paul developed a particular interest in open innovation and crowdsourcing through his work with TELUS Communications and his experience supporting various non-profits since graduating from Acadia University in 1990. Ideavibes as a company, and the platform, have been built though Paul’s intent on collaborating with the best and brightest from all aspects of business, government, and the non-profit sector.