The biggest enemy of innovation is not fear (that can be overcome). It’s ego. If you are satisfied with your organization’s success there’s no reason to innovate. Right? Wrong.
Personal satisfaction in how your company or membership group is doing breeds complacency plus it’s objective. You’re satisfaction in doing something “well” is relative. You’re happy with 85% retention and 5% growth. Things are fine. You’re fine. You’ve even talked to other membership organizations and your numbers trump theirs a million times over. Stay the course, right? Eh-eh. Your ego has quieted your curiosity and buried your innate human instinct to want more (of a good thing).
Maybe it’s not your ego getting in the way. Maybe you have a great idea for doing events differently so you complete your research and muster up the courage to take it to your board and you’re told things are fine. Don’t need to change what isn’t broken. You’ve been stripped of your argument. You are no longer selling your solution because no one sees a problem/challenge. But the problem isn’t yet a problem and without a problem it becomes very difficult to sell a solution (or innovation).
Innovation doesn’t get killed by “…but we’ve always done it this way.” It gets put down by people who don’t see a reason for it. When your ego precludes you from seeing that things can be better (or even imagining that there’s something more) you’re in stagnation city. You just don’t know it yet.