Leading for innovation

By: Dan Lucy and Meysam Poorkavoos

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Innovations can change the shape of an industry seemingly overnight and can influence the life and death of an organisation. In a globalised, increasingly competitive world, organisations are realising the value of innovation both as a means of staying ahead of their rivals but also as a means of doing more with less.

There are many myths that surround the topic of innovation. This research report looks at the evidence on innovation and in so doing debunks these myths. We offer a model of the leadership capabilities required to encourage greater innovation: setting a compelling vision; empowering and trusting others; encouraging difference and collaboration; valuing and demonstrating support for innovation; sense-making and managing ambiguity; influencing and micro-political skills; and relevant technical expertise.

We take a systemic view and recognise that there are a wide array of influences on innovation culture, or the lack of it. With this in mind, we offer a set of diagnostic questions to help HR and OD practitioners reflect on the state of innovation within their own organisations and levers available to them to effect change

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