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Guest Blog: Cities Networking for Innovation

By Paula S. | August 27, 2015

This week I attended my second Alliance for Innovation Forum in Oklahoma City. Members from the City of Tulsa, the City of Oklahoma City, Ponca City, & Stillwater were in attendance. We discussed topics related to an article called "Six Qualities Linked to Innovation." Spoiler alert: here are the six qualities linked to innovation from that article:

  • Inclusive Leadership
  • Relentless Creativity
  • Extensive Internal Collaboration
  • Robust External Partnerships
  • Authentic Community Connections
  • Reality Focused, Results Driven

During the Alliance for Innovation forum, we were divided into groups for two afternoon sessions to discuss how these six qualities are related to our current work environments with ideas for handling challenges associated to each area. Listening to other cities discuss challenges identical to those we face here at the City of Tulsa was extremely insightful. It was also helpful hearing about what has already been implemented as well as sharing concepts for improvements to those challenges.

A couple of insights I gained at this forum included finding out our Customer Care Center is currently involved in an EMSA Enrollment campaign from an ICMA Management Fellows who is currently working with Customer Care. My group also discussed the concept of letting teams determine the benefits and incentives for successful outcomes of projects, etc., in order to be more reality-focused and results driven. We also discussed methods to improve employee involvement. I'm proud to say the cities voted to have the MAAP Idea Basecamp program highlighted in an upcoming Alliance for Innovation article.

Being able to learn new things about what is happening outside of my department, but within my own organization at the forum was a great experience! As a current MAAP Champion, it is rewarding to be part of a program which allows for interaction/engagement with other cities, as well as our own organization. I look forward to future Alliance for Innovation forums and helping train our new MAAP Champions. I highly encourage you to become involved as well with both the Alliance for Innovation and the MAAP Champion program!

Note from Robyn Undieme: Anyone can attend the Alliance for Innovation Forums. If you're interested in attending one in the future, contact the MAAP office -maap@cityoftulsa.org - and we'll put you on the list to notify you of any upcoming forums.