Managing Employee Creativity and Innovation in Selected Zimbabwean Manufacturing Companies
Keywords:Barriers, Employee creativity, Enablers, Innovation, Operational level, Organisational level, Personal level
The economic situation in Zimbabwe is worsening rapidly. Proper managing of employee creativity and innovation gives organisations a competitive edge. This study explored the managing of employee creativity and innovation in two manufacturing companies in Zimbabwe. An exploratory research design and a qualitative research method were utilised. Face-to-face interviews were conducted. Qualitative content analysis was used to analyse the data. The findings indicate that rewards, benchmarking, training, sense of belonging, engagement, feedback, teamwork and collaboration form part of the enabling factors in managing employee creativity and innovation. The identified employee creativity and innovation barriers were fear, punishment, lack of funding, lack of research and development in Zimbabwe, limited technology, and bureaucracy. Only two manufacturing companies in Zimbabwe were included in this study. The focus of this study was on employee creativity and innovation. However, there are other themes that could also have been investigated in the rapidly worsening economic Zimbabwean context. If managers do not give the necessary attention to employee creativity and innovation on a personal level of an employee, on an operational roll-out level, as well as on the bigger arena of the organisation, it might be that the companies lack competitiveness and do not contribute to the improvement of the economic situation in Zimbabwe. The contribution of this study lies in the in-depth explication of employee creativity and innovation in a rapidly worsening economic Zimbabwean context.
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