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Knowledge · MIT Sloan Management Review

Turning slack time into innovation

May 29, 2018

Slack time

Some companies give their employees time and resources to explore innovation projects outside of their normal workload – and it can work in everyone’s favour. In fact, 3M says the Post-it Note invention came from the company’s decision to allow employees to use 15 per cent of their paid time to work on side projects.

Ivey professors Yasser Rahrovani and Rob Austin, along with Professor Alain Pinsonneault from Desautels Faculty of Management, authored an article for MIT Sloan Management Review about slack innovation programs and how to match “slack strategy” to employee type.

“Given the significant investment that slack-based innovation programs require, the decision to adopt one shouldn’t be made off the cuff,” they write. “But what are the factors underlying that decision and how should such programs be designed?”

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