culture

Overcoming Challenges Through Continuous Learning

Last week, I went to a fantastically informative event, hosted by the Churchill Club, Melbourne. It was about “Developing the Tech Talent of the Future”. New technologies and shifting customer expectations are shifting the business game. In the same way, new platforms, products and services, business models and other emerging creative surprises are, disrupting the learning game. To promote this “sold ...

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Culture Remains the Strongest Innovation Litmus Test

For being members of a discipline that prides itself on discovering the unknown, innovation practitioners have a secret lust of commonplace predictability and yearn for security as much as any human being. Seeing how they too often become the mistaken and hapless scapegoats for lack of core business growth, it is easy to empathize with this longing for belonging and ...

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Cognitive Bias is an Innovation Killer

I recently wrote about Cognitive Diversity, and today I reflect on Cognitive Bias, the other side of the same coin. I think (subconsciously biased) therefore I am (subconsciously biased). Psychologists generally agree that 90% of our decision making is driven by the subconscious. In other words, only 10% of the time are we actively (consciously) making decisions. The subconscious mind ...

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Designing Your Culture for High Performance

If you follow this column you know that we live in paradoxical times. While our future depends on digital transformations and disruption in every industry, the future of the workplace is human-centered. This particular paradox presents a unique set of issues. If you embrace the thinking in the popular management book, Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast, and believe that a ...

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Reduce Fear to Release Potential

Fear is a bigger factor in organizational life than we like to admit, and it works against many of the best-practices that are espoused by leaders and their gurus. Reduce fear, and a lot of good things can happen. To start with, I’ve found that senior people often have no idea how intimidated they make people feel (I’m not talking ...

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Are other peoples’ fears the cause of your frustration?

I was working with a pharmaceutical distribution business that needed to innovate, and fast. Drugs were coming off-patent, and industry forces were going to change who made money and how. The MD was worried. He was also frustrated that his senior managers, who he described as excellent operations people, were failing to come up with innovative responses to the new ...

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Cognitive Diversity is the DNA of Innovation

Katrina Sherrerd, CEO of Research Affiliates, poses an interesting challenge, “Achieving cognitive diversity is easier said than done. We all have a neurobiological preference for comfort and familiarity over discomfort and the unknown. Human nature inclines us toward people and ideas that confirm and reflect our views. Only when we resist and suppress our instincts can we build teams of ...

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Developing Collaborative Leadership Styles

With a new Australian government recently in place, it raises key questions around the impact of collaborative, autocratic or competitive leadership styles. This caused many voters, like myself, to question what leadership style might be best for our country’s future? Is it a leader who runs a presidential style campaign, operating from an “I” or a singular perspective, or is ...

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Breaking Out of the Bubble 

Anyone can get caught in a bubble – it happens without you realising it. And even if you notice, it can be hard to escape. I remember one CEO telling me that his big worry was isolation. Not emotional isolation, but isolation from real information. He felt stuck at the end of a corridor, in a corner office, and found ...

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