LEADING FOR INNOVATION

Leading in the NEXT

 

A global survey by Centre for Creative Leadership found that 94% of executives believe that innovation is a key driver of organizational success. And yet, just 14% of those respondents have confidence in their organization’s ability to drive innovation effectively.

 

For leaders and organizations trying to close
that gap, leadership makes all the difference.

 

In fact, CCL’s extensive experience with helping clients around the world foster innovation – coupled with a growing body of research – demonstrates that leadership is the single most important factor for nurturing creativity and fuelling innovation at the individual, team and organizational levels.

 

Simply put, leaders must act in ways that
promote and support innovation in their cultures.

 

RUNNING THE BUSINESS vs IMPROVING THE BUSINESS

LEADERS must balance running the current business with working on ways to create new opportunities. Often, promising new ideas are put aside or forgotten due to the pace of daily operations and the pressure to hit short-term targets. HOWEVER, innovation and operations can—and must—coexist.

EMBRACING UNCERTAINTY AND REMAINING FLEXIBLE

The context for innovation is complex — LEADERS and everyone working with them are experiencing change upon change upon change. LEADERS must be flexible about innovation. It will mean doing things differently, experimenting with options that has never been done before. Trying to maintain the status quo is not a sustainable option. UNCERTAINTY, is a CERTAIN. Innovation practices cannot become routine.

TRUE COLLABORATION AT SCALE

Innovation does not come from a single creative person having a flash of insight or from the innovation department alone. Innovation comes from people with diverse perspectives who connect, collaborate, and build on each other’s ideas. Challenges today are so complex and ambiguous that no one person can solve them alone.

READY, REALLY?

Many LEADERS are jumping in feet first,
looking to innovate before they’ve done the
work to assess their level of readiness to
nurture innovation and build the right
internal structures and environment.
Often they look to successful innovative
organisations and try to model what they see.
And often, they fail.

THE 4Cs of LEADING FOR INNOVATION

The sole objective of leading for innovation to create a SHARED UNDERSTANDING and LANGUAGE OF INNOVATION.

The shared understanding is the act of Achieving Congruence or a state of harmonious alignment. It occurs when all an stakeholders are happily engaged in co-creating their future together. Achieving this congruence, or alignment, requires the stakeholders to operate as a collaborative community of purpose – a community with a shared purpose and a commitment to generating outcomes that represent equitable-shared value for all its members. As leaders of organisations work towards this, consider the following dials to accelerate or focus on to shape the practices suitable to your business aspirations.

Critical Tasks

  • If everything is priority, then nothing is.

  • Recognise & understand what is the 20% of Tasks that deliver 80% of the results.

  • Do it well, do it often.

 

Controls

  • Things that are measured, get done.

  • Measure revenue, you get revenue, but high cost.

  • What are the dials, the levellers that needs to be tightened or accelerated to unleash innovation?

Competencies

  • You can’t teach a fish to climb a tree

  • Leaders need to be equipped to lead differently

  • Teams need to learn to work differently

  • Individuals need to learn to think differently

 

Culture

  • A collective behaviour that is displayed repeatedly and consistently

  • What are the required collective behaviour to encourage and give space for innovation to happen?

 

Ultimately, Leading for Innovation is about Leadership Fitness. Leadership fitness is the term used to describe the ability of the LEADER to perform in uncertain environments. Fitness often is the physical, mental and emotional state of a person in response to the stress and pressure they are put through. Having the right leadership persona for the right circumstances, gives leaders courage and confidence to lead from the front.

© 2020 by BeInClarity