Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend?
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The Strategic Value of Unrealistic Goals - Accounting meets Vision & Innovation

The Strategic Value of Unrealistic Goals - Accounting meets Vision & Innovation | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

"'Strategic intent" lets companies make big, bold bets, regardless of resources.'"

   

The author, Vijay Govindarajan, went from professor of accounting to a new role as researcher on strategy and innovation, based on an article "Strategic Intent" by Gary Hamel and C.K. Prahalad's circa 1989.

    

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Strategic intent takes the long view - to operate from the future backward, disregarding the resource scarcity of the present.

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His point is huge for innovation to succeed:  

   

  • Strategic intent takes the long view -  to operate from the future backward, disregarding the resource scarcity of the present.
   

Excerpts:

   
There are two views on strategy. The conventional view is that the firm should assess its resources and match resources with opportunities.

   

  • If Canon had followed that advice in the early 1970s, it would have never taken on Xerox. 
   

Hamel and Prahalad have an entirely different point of view. According to them, the firm should expand its resource base to meet its ambition.

   

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...[a] firm should expand its resource base to meet its ambition

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...In accounting, we always argued that "realistic" goals are the best, since they are achievable and as such are better motivators. I've even contributed to this literature on goal setting.

   

But according to Prahalad and Hamel, firms should set unrealistic goals, not realistic goals.

    

...the more I reflected on the article, the more it made sense. Realistic goals promote incremental moves; only unrealistic goals provoke breakthrough thinking.

   

JFK's audacious goal in the early 1960s when the U.S. fell behind the Soviet Union in the technology race: "this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to the Earth."

   

  • JFK's intent produced many breakthrough technologies.

   

In a similar way, "Strategic Intent" inspired me to think about mountains and not molehills as I shaped my research agenda around breakthrough innovation.

   

Read the full article here:

   

From Deb, a companion article on Strategic Agility is here.   Regarding resources, note:

   

  • Resource Fluidity: the internal capability to reconfigure business systems and redeploy resources rapidly,
   
  • Collective Commitment e.g. Leadership Unity: the ability of the top team to make bold decisions –fast, without being bogged in “win-lose” politics at the top.

Via Society for College and University Planning (SCUP)
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Remodel Your Meetings To Create Internal Entrepreneurs | Fast Company

Remodel Your Meetings To Create Internal Entrepreneurs | Fast Company | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it
Imagine going to work on a Monday, only to find that everything in your work environment changed overnight. The corporate reception area is gone, along with the receptionist, who could barely be bothered to acknowledge the likes of you, anyway.

 

In less than two hours, everything is radically transformed. Each new idea is nurtured, explored and tested rather than flatly rejected with one negative cliché after another. The glass is suddenly perceived as half-full rather than relegated to its usual half-empty status.  

 

...BlackBerries and iPhones are turned off. ...There are no emails. The focus is absolute.

 

Good ideas are immediately locked in. People claim responsibility for tasks. Small groups are formed to set plans in motion.

 

Deadlines are set for the next month, as opposed to the next year. After the meeting, everyone leaves with a one-page summary of all the decisions.

 

Read on for some great inspiration and possibly, "it could happen here!"

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Improvisation May Be the Key to Successfully Managing Change, MIT

Improvisation May Be the Key to Successfully Managing Change, MIT | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

"Key attributes for almost any organization, and SO CHALLENGING to implement: agility , flexibility, improvisation – a company’s ability to quickly change is crucial to its long-term success."


 MIT's Leadership Center weighs in via an article by professor Wanda J. Orlikowski that equates a successful company to an orchestra.   Yes, I've heard this before.  Benjamin Zander is quite compelling in his leadership videos on this very note, pun intended.


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...to allow for improvisation, CEOs need to release some control and allow employees to experiment.
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What is helpful in the article is yet another example of "letting go" as in, "sometimes, however, the conductor needs to let go and let its skilled and creative musicians lead."  Well now, MIT, yes.  And Orpheus, the conductor-less orchestra, has taught us as much.  Releasing "some control" as quoted below, is the magic sauce, in my opinion, and adding in some feedback and perspective, on lessons learned, is a part of it.


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"sometimes, however, the conductor needs to let go and let its skilled and creative musicians lead."


Yes, Orpheus, the conductor-less orchestra, has taught us as much. 


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It is always, helpful, however to review suggestions for how to create and sustain an agile, flexible, improvisational culture.  


Here are Orlikowski's tips for creating such an organization, excerpted:


  • Plan to improvise - sometimes you can anticipate change, and if you can do that, you should plan to address that change in a flexible way
  • Adapt when you cannot foresee – as business rules are changing, adapt and test on a smaller, departmental scale before making company-wide changes
  • Create a learning environment – encourage communication between your employees in different locations and departments, push everyone to learn from each other
  • Encourage flexibility – to allow for improvisation, CEOs need to release some control and allow employees to experiment
  • Improvise today for success tomorrow – create a culture of experimentation and improvisation even when you’re not experiencing extreme change in practice for when you do need to change



A companion article and video to this one is how Asst. Professor Steve Leybourne, Boston University experiences improv connected with the finance industry, creating a model and citing risk, reward in managers who surreptitiously improvise.   In his video, you'll see evidence of the "let go of micromanaging" and still how it is tentative in corporate culture.  It seems we have a long way to go to let go, but writing about those who research it is a start.  


  • Source:  http://www.scoop.it/t/innovation-institutions-will-it-blend/p/1715217458/moving-beyond-surreptitious-manager-improv-risk-reward-emerging-best-practice-in-your-org-steve-leybourne


What is your experience with creating a culture that is agile , flexible, and especially improvisational?



Photo credit:   ePi.Longo  Article source:  Chief Executive Magazine

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New Ventures: The Result is Rarely the Starting Point

New Ventures: The Result is Rarely the Starting Point | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

Have you ever thought of starting a company? Mark Moore (42) has. Four times. And with two acquisitions and an IPO behind him, expectations on his current venture, “One True Media” are high.

 

So where do the ideas come from? How does Mark create that flash of brilliance which gives ignition to a company; a successful company?

 

...It’s never the big things
In creating ventures, its little changes that really matter. One True Media had a terrific holiday season in 2005, but in Janauary 2006 the business went dark. Mark and his team kept changing.

 

At the end of January, they had a breakthrough. People wanted to share. One True Media added a simple feature that let users put photos and video onto “myspace,” an Internet community site. All of a sudden users were doubling every two weeks. Less than a year and countless more changes later, One True Media has over 880,000 registered users and has created over a million videos.

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