A letter by Luca Franceschi, President of Dianova International on the occasion of the publication of Dianova's Annual Report 2014
All of us have heard this fashionable but all too true statement: all organizations must innovate for reasons of basic efficiency, whether economically, socially or ecologically. In a global environment marked by uncontrolled evolutions, commercial enterprises, institutions and NGOs must improve their performance on an ongoing basis to successfully cope with these changes. Innovation has become a necessity.
In the case of the Dianova Network, our organizations have had to quickly adapt to the effects of the crisis, especially to the cutbacks in public funding. At the same time, they have had to take up a new challenge: that of providing adequate responses to the emerging needs arising from the crisis. To make it short: they had to do more with less.
To resolve this paradox, Dianova organizations have responded with innovation in services thus diversifying and offering projects adapted to the needs of increasingly vulnerable and marginalized populations. They have managed to implement internal and external partnerships which have enabled them to develop activities that they would have been unable to carry out by themselves, while taking advantage of new opportunities.
Our organizations have also focused on organizational innovation with the implementation of more efficient human resource management practices focusing on: people's well-being at work, work-life balance, equal opportunities for all, suitable organization of the workplace and enhanced working methods, the implementation of quality management systems, and employee training programmes.
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Dianova's most recent "Management & Development" seminar, precisely dedicated to innovation, taught us that creativity is not a gift per se. Most people can be creative, provided they are able to listen carefully and make appropriate connections, that they are spontaneous, without prejudice and capable of thinking "out of the box". But in order to let creativity flourish, management techniques and work conditions capable of fostering entrepreneurship and innovative projects must be implemented. We should go much farther in the implementation of such techniques.
According to sociologist Zygmunt Bauman, we live in a "liquid modernity", a society that is more and more flexible, where people and organizations are battered by the winds of change, forced to constantly adapt to realities redefined perpetually. In order to take up a challenge which somewhat exceeds our comprehension, there is only one suitable attitude: always think ahead and anticipate.
The cohesion of The Dianova Network has permitted us to get through tough times; nevertheless, we won't be able to shape the future development of Dianova if we remain unassisted. The future strength of The Dianova Network is emerging today. It is made of openness, networking and partnerships. We will build this future by taking advantage of every single source of inspiration, by utilizing the knowledge and assets of our partners, by developing new projects, by reinforcing our network so it can carries greater weight within international forums, by exploring new funding alternatives, etc. Because being a non-profit organization does not involve that one should lose money…
The future is already present; together we will meet these challenges.