Create the Conditions for Growth…
Successful Innovation requires managers to take action.
This is never more true when organizations work toward embedding a culture of innovation to adapt to their dynamic environment. Managers are vital in successfully creating conditions that will allow people to work, act, and behave differently.
Employees look to their managers for a vision, beliefs, values and support as they decide to what degree they will welcome the change.
Factors in Creating the Conditions for Continuous Innovation
A Growth Mindset
Cultivating a climate of learning is the holy grail of driving continuous innovation, thus embracing a “growth mindset” is key. Some best practices that underpin a growth mindset, and that can be reflected in the leader’s behaviour, include the notions that:
- Customers determine our outcomes. They are the ultimate truth
- We create a safe learning environment: we aren’t afraid to fail
- We change the conversation and focus on customer-validated learning
- We stop success theatre: Scrap the vanity metrics in favour of learning metrics
- We challenge the addiction to be right; humility is underrated
- We get better things done, faster; we empower our teams and put accountability where it needs to be
So what should managers think about as they embark on their Innovation journey?
- Empowering each other…stop creating unnecessary blockages
- Starting small with a razor-sharp focus on the real priorities…stop wasting time on things that don’t matter!!
- Creating conditions that encourage trying and learning …giving teams permission to experiment…
- Creating a learning environment for the whole organization…Humility is critical…
- Getting stuck in… starting to live and breathe the new mindset
- The Mechanics for Change
It is important to realize the existing processes and structures in the organization may not be complementary to a new way of working.
So, if the organization expects managers and employees to behave differently, give them the tools to work differently and how people are held accountable also needs to be considered.
So, it is important to think of:
- Ensuring the individuals and the managers they report to, have aligned incentives and performance objectives and an effective feedback loop. Conflicts of interest can have catastrophic implications on project outcomes.
The importance of the mindset and mechanics involved in an Innovation cannot be underestimated, and so, leaders must be aware of the influence and impact they can have on their employees. The organization depends on its leaders to drive the desired outcomes of the change.
Elements of this article were taken from the Lean Start-up and are only used as a reference.
If you would like to understand more about this and how it can help your business, contact me and we can have a discussion.