Think Leadership Ideas

Accelerating Innovation

Leading for Innovation

Does the future success of your organization require ongoing innovation? Let me ask another way, if you keep doing things exactly as you do them today will you be just as successful in five years?

If your organization is dependent on knowledge work and professional competencies it’s highly unlikely the winning formula will remain unchanged. Innovation is essential! The challenge is that leading a team or organization for continuous innovation requires different structures, processes, and culture than managing for continuous high-performance operations. Read More...

Free the Creative Genie

Sooner or later any group that works together, be they employees in the same office, volunteers on a non-profit board, or executives on a management team, will be called upon to come up with some creative ideas – to innovate. Unfortunately, what typically happens when the designated leader asks the group to “give me your best ideas,” the reply is limited to standard answers, conventional responses, or blank stares. Would that these hard working souls had some creativity in them! Well I’m here to tell you that groups can let the genie of creativity out of the bottle if they understand three counter-intuitive principles - quantity over quality, reduce inhibition, and seek some chaos.


Edge of the Box Thinking

When desperate for innovation, what is most any leader likely to say? “Think outside of the box.” Think about it.

“Out of the Box” is a cliché, a phrase that’s been around for decades. Everyone knows what it means, but it’s hardly a trigger for ideas that are fresh, creative, and original. I encourage people to focus on Edge of the Box thinking – especially if you need ideas with a high potential for useful application.

Edge of the Box thinking is based on viewing the world at the boundaries of your organization and experience, where inside and outside perspectives can be combined, and where fresh ideas most likely will emerge. In today’s knowledge-based world, useful innovation typically arises out of combining core competencies with ideas taken from places outside of your industry or field, but not so far out as to be inaccessible. Read More...