In a recent blog post I discussed the virtues of Design Thinking as a framework to facilitate the creation of innovative marketing and communication strategies.
In this post, I offer thoughts on what leaders need to do to create a culture where innovation and design thinking can actually thrive.
Lessons from Harvard Business Review.
In an article published in the December 2009 issue of the Harvard Business Review entitled “The Innovators DNA" authors Jeffrey H. Dyer, Hal B. Gregerson, and Clayton M. Christensen discuss the characteristics of leadership that drive innovation cultures within organizations. The article is the result of a six-year study to uncover the origins of creative - and often disruptive - business strategies in innovative companies.
The authors discovered that the best leaders in many organizations are not the genius behind ground breaking innovations. Rather they are the curators of ideas and design and are the facilitators of collaboration that often lead to great innovations.
The ability to innovate is the secret sauce of business success.
Companies that embody the spirit of innovation through design will lead and win in the market. Companies like Apple, Amazon, and Proctor & Gamble are great examples of companies that are leading and transforming the competitive landscape of their respective markets based (in large part) by the culture of innovation that runs through their DNA.
In an effort to isolate the characteristics of innovative leaders the authors of the HBR article identifed the following fundamental characteristics and skills that leaders must posess.