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Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend?
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Compensation Bloat? University of Michigan faculty question administrator pay in open letter

Compensation Bloat?  University of Michigan faculty question administrator pay in open letter | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

An open letter to University of Michigan's Board of Regents from about a dozen of the school's faculty criticizes the school's administrative pay and bonus system. "The University is in desperate and urgent need of fiscal reform." 


____________________
   
The authors argue that U-M is not transparent about its pay supplements...some administrators received...in excess of $50,000.

     

____________________


The authors argue that U-M is not transparent about its pay supplements, and that they are an unwise use of money from the general fund. Data obtained by the professors show that some administrators received salary supplements in excess of $50,000.

  

...Anthony Mora, a history professor who helped author the letter, said that while it's reasonable executive officers have higher compensation that most staff, U-M's compensation rates for those officers are between 27 and 41 percent higher than the rates' of administrators at peer institutions such as Berkeley, Texas and Virginia, according to a review done by the faculty.
 

"We want to have an open and candid discussion about the university's resources," Mora said. "I don't see this as an effort to be adversarial with the administration. I think people in the administration are genuine when they say they care about the university. But I do think there's an opportunity here for the faculty and the administration to work together."

Deb Nystrom, REVELN's insight:

The escalating costs of higher education may no longer be taken for granted with such moves as these from the core of  the university system, the faculty.

The article also referenced the initially poorly implemented, cost cutting administrative shared services initiative (labeled AST, Administrative Services Transformation)  that did not include the faculty voice in its cost cutting planning and involved the use of several consulting firms with expenses totalling over 11 million for consulting services.  As as consultant myself, I know consultant have reasons to charge a high rate, but leaving the faculty voice out of a change initiative mystifies me.


I look forward to hearing where this letter leads in dealing with, perhaps, some unquestioned compensation practices.   ~  Deb


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Deb Nystrom, REVELN's curator insight, April 25, 4:05 PM

Several faculty have taken up the gauntlet to question escalating costs - starting with higher education administrative bonuses.  Executive bonuses may no longer be taken for granted with such moves as these, perhaps prompted by the poorly planned, cost cutting administrative shared services initiative (labeled AST, Administrative Services Transformation)  which, incidentally, did NOT include the faculty voice in its cost cutting planning.


It also involved the use of several consulting firms with expenses totalling over 11 million for consulting services.  As as consultant myself, I know consultant have reasons to charge a high rate, but leaving the faculty voice out of a change initiative mystifies me.


I look forward to hearing where this letter leads in dealing with, perhaps, some unquestioned compensation practices, and perhaps stepping higher education back to a bigger picture of where the value generation resides and how it needs to be valued today.   ~  Deb

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World for What It Is, or What It Could Be? Elon Musk, Tesla Motors

World for What It Is, or What It Could Be? Elon Musk, Tesla Motors | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

We need people who can execute ...including mastering acceleration.


Elon Musk

Recently featured in a Wall Street Journal article, Musk is compared to Steve Jobs, another visionary, and is then discussed as follows:


Elon Musks's ambitions soar even higher...


His electric-car company Tesla Motors aims to remake the way we drive, while the ultimate goal of his rocket company SpaceX, he said, is to travel to Mars and help build a self-sustaining base there.


______________________

We need people who can execute. Too often people jump ship before they see an idea through...

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Skepticism?  ...each time Mr. Musk delivers a better, less-expensive electric car or launches another rocket successfully, he proves his doubters wrong.


...he co-founded a multibillion-dollar company called PayPal.


...Musk...taught himself to code and program software by the age of 12.


After ...leaving a PhD program at Stanford, Musk dedicated himself to the three important problems that would most affect the future of humanity.  "One was the internet, one was clean energy, and one was space."


All three are revolutionary spaces, and to work in all three most certainly requires an individual willing to completely reinvent himself and his expertise to change course as needed.


We need people who can execute. Too often people jump ship before they see an idea through and don't even begin to master the competency of acceleration before they are onto the next thing.


Related posts from Deb:

     



Deb Nystrom, REVELN's insight:

Originally posted on my Change Leadership Watch stream, it also is highly instructive to the innovation theme, especially with the lessons of staying-the-course with the new idea and execution.  ~ Deb

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Deb Nystrom, REVELN's curator insight, July 10, 2013 11:01 AM

The Tesla story has elements of sensing the future that can be instructive for anyone in a change space including innovation.  ~  D

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Leading in a VUCA world

Leading in a VUCA world | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

"How’s your leadership working on in your VUCA world (Volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous)? "


Liz Guthridge has written a great post on leading in a VUCA world; VCUA stands for volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous, a term coined by the US Army War College in the weeks before September 11, 2001.  


Liz & I discussed the need for collaboration and community across disciplines to succeed in a VUCA world in connection with our recent panel + Open Space presentation we did for a global change conference.


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VUCA can provide threats [and] offer opportunities, especially if you translate VUCA as “vision, understanding, clarity and agility.” ~ Dr. Bob Johansen

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Here are some excerpts of her take on the insightful presentation by one of our keynote presenters:


"Leading in a VUCA world" is a popular phrase with Bob Johansen, a distinguished fellow and former president of Institute for the Future.


According to Dr. Johansen, who shared his 2020 forecast at the Association of Change Management Professionals global conference this week, our VUCA world is not going away. In fact it’s just going to spin faster during the next decade.


In his talk “External Future Forces That Will Disrupt the Practice of Change Management,” Dr. Johansen noted that VUCA is not necessarily doom and gloom. While VUCA can provide threats, it also can offer opportunities, especially if you translate VUCA as “vision, understanding, clarity and agility.”


As for his two big 2022 predictions for organizational change agents, they are:


1. “The digital natives (now 16 years or younger) will create new practices to make change through gaming.” (The other key phrase besides gaming in this sentence is “make.” Dr. Johansen predicts that a culture of makers will drive the next generation of change. And as a result, leaders need to show the “maker instinct” trait.)


2. “Reciprocity-based innovation will focus on the economic, social and psychological value of reciprocity.” (Two important traits for leaders are smart-mob organizing and commons creating. Think Creative Commons.)


Dr. Johansen challenged the 825 of us in attendance to figure out how to help people and organizations adapt to these changes and others.


To do this, we should watch our terms and our questions.  Read Liz's full post here.

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Tom Hood's curator insight, April 6, 2013 5:16 PM

We just covered this in our townhall this past Monday. Arelene Thomas (AICPA/CGMA) talked about VUCA related to CPAs in Biz/Industry.


VUCA can provide threats [and] offer opportunities, especially if you translate VUCA as “vision, understanding, clarity and agility.” ~ Dr. Bob Johansen

Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, April 6, 2013 5:26 PM

We need to consider VUCA

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Negative Innovation: Predatory For-Profit Colleges & GI Bill Money continues, new legislation pending

Negative Innovation:  Predatory For-Profit Colleges & GI Bill Money continues, new legislation pending | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

"Frontline's expose' (PBS, Frontline)  highlights predatory practices aimed at returning military veterans."  


Weakened legislation has been passed.  More robust legislation is pending, finally, aimed at curbing what sponsors call aggressive marketing of subpar, profit-motive programs.


The abuses include:

  • volume oriented higher-education program recruiting, 
  • inaccurate verbal statements from recruiters about transferable credits that conflict with binding legal documents, and 
  • political wangling about legislation to stop the abuses that, if weakened, can be highly profitable to the politically connected.  

That these for-profit higher education institutions have taken aim at returning war veterans is the most appalling.  Innovation doesn't come with morality guidelines.  That rests solely within leadership ethics.


Excerpt 1:  EXPOSÉ Online [The PBS] film ...Educating Sergeant Pantkze, features, how in recent years, for-profits have increased efforts to attract veterans after the passage of a robust new post-9/11 GI Bill in 2008.   Frontline has also covered for-profit practice in an earlier expose' in 2010, in a program entitled College.Inc.


Excerpt 2:  Predatory for-profit schools
Military columnist Tom Philpott, a former Coast Guardsman, has led the criticism of what he calls the “predatory for-profit schools” that “rob veterans of their Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits.” He quotes Theodore (Ted) L. Daywalt, chief executive officer and president of VetJobs, an online job search firm for military veterans, as saying that he learned about the problem through working with disappointed vets who thought they had used their GI Bill to earn credible degrees only to learn they were “worthless.”


“The eighth for-profit company among the top 10 institutions getting GI Bill payments is Kaplan, owned by The Washington Post. Its Post-9/11 GI Bill payments climbed in 12 months from $17 million to $44 million,” noted Philpott. 


Source 2:  http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/43648

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Leading Change: Three Major Misconceptions That Hinder Innovation

Leading Change: Three Major Misconceptions That Hinder Innovation | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

"Innovation has become vital for value creation. More than ever will it distinguish successful institutions from the less successful..."


Three fundamental misconceptions stick out.


1. Innovation is synonym for change:

Too often innovation and change initiatives are mixed up. Many change initiatives are actually improvement oriented and based on knowledge and examples that are already available in the marketplace (best practices, benchmarks, pilots), and are therefore not innovative.


Real innovation requires a company to go first, to go where no one has been before; to be a leader rather than a follower.


2. Innovation is a business goal as any other:

Research shows that successful innovation depends on the level of strategic alignment in the organization: alignment between the corporate strategy, the innovation strategy and the corporate culture (see a recent study in S+B on this). Innovation is therefore more fundamental.


It requires a specific innovation strategy and culture, based on:

  • a profound understanding of the external developments, 
  • how we adjust our strategy to it, 
  • in what part of the business (products, services, processes, systems) we need to innovate, 
  • how we use our qualities and competencies to create innovation, 
  • what competencies we are missing and need to develop, 
  • how we deal with trial & error and failure, 
  • how we will change the way we work in teams, 
  • how we will refocus resources.
=

3. An innovation culture is something you can copy from successful innovative companies:   Wrong, doing what others do is not innovating! You can learn lessons from others, but you will have to translate those to your own reality.

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Deb Nystrom, REVELN's comment, December 19, 2011 11:54 AM
Also from Deb: This is one of the better blog posts I've seen out there, especially highlighting specific differences between innovation strategy and change management. The list alone mirrors recent innovation consulting strategy in consulting organizations.
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Innovation is About Execution, Despite the Myths - Forbes

Innovation is About Execution, Despite the Myths - Forbes | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

Most people think innovation is all about ideas, when in fact it is more about delivery, people, and process.

 

Vijay Govindarajan and Chris Trimble, in their book “The Other Side of Innovation: Solving the Execution Challenge” have done the best recent research on this subject.

 

For example:  Myth:  Effective innovation leaders are subversives fighting the system.

 

Fact:  Effective innovation leaders are not necessarily the biggest risk takers, mavericks, and rebels. The primary virtue of an effective innovation leader is humility. What you want is integration with real world operations.


Via Karen Steffensen
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Google Reveals Its 9 Principles of Innovation

Google Reveals Its 9 Principles of Innovation | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

What makes Google the holy grail of productivity and creativity? Take a look at their nine core principles of innovation.  


Excerpts:


1. INNOVATION COMES FROM ANYWHERE

...top down as well as bottom up, and in the places you least expect.


...a medical doctor on Google’s staff argued persuasively that Google had a moral obligation to extend help to those typing searches under the phrase "how to commit suicide." He ignited the charge to adjust the search engine's response so that the top of the screen reveals the toll free phone number for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline. The call volume went up by nine percent soon thereafter. The same change has been adopted in many other countries.


3. AIM TO BE TEN TIMES BETTER

..aim...to improve things by ten percent, you will only see incremental change. ...think 10 times improvement, and that will force you to think outside the box.


...n 2004, Google started its Google Books project and set forth a challenge to organize all the world's information and digitize all the books ever printed in history.


...Google has now scanned 30 million of the 130 million books they first set out to scan, and dozens of libraries around the world are participating in the project.


4. BET ON TECHNICAL INSIGHTS

Every organization has unique insights, and if you bet on it, it leads to major innovation. Google engineers, not the auto industry, came up with the idea of driverless cars after seeing that millions of traffic deaths come from human error.


The others?

2. FOCUS ON THE USER.


5. SHIP AND ITERATE


6. GIVE EMPLOYEES 20 PERCENT TIME


7. DEFAULT TO OPEN PROCESSES


8. FAIL WELL


9. HAVE A MISSION THAT MATTERS



Related posts by Deb:

     

Messing up a Change Implementation with Someone Else’s Learning Culture?

       

3 Success Factors for High Performance Teams, and What Gets In the Way


           

A Two Step, Two Video Dance towards Loose – Tight Change & Innovation Leadership

Deb Nystrom, REVELN's insight:

This inspiring list can stimulate great discussions at all levels for what YOU want in your own culture, mission and vision and management practices.

One caution to note, culture change is not for amateurs.   Take a look at the article references I've listed above for some of the reasons why.

~  Deb 

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Deb Nystrom, REVELN's curator insight, November 20, 2013 11:00 AM

From our Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend?  curation news:  This list can inspire useful discussions at all levels for what YOU want in your own culture, mission and vision and management practices.

One caution, having a meeting on such a topic or deciding to change culture is not for amateurs.   Take a look at the article references I've listed above for some of the reasons why.

~  Deb 

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Here Come The Intrapreneurs - Forbes

Here Come The Intrapreneurs - Forbes | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

"There is a third way, and it's called being an intrapreneur."


Yes, you can innovate from the inside, but as in many organizations, it depends on culture, climate, placement, experience, network, and many other factors.


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a large organization that becomes complacent and loses sight of the benefits of having an entrepreneurial streak built into their massive global systems can find themselves disrupted in short order. ~ David Armano

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Here's a recent Forbes interview take on an older idea, intrapreneuring, that has been around awhile.  It's always worth a look, if it might tip the scales in favor of your organization being more intrapreneurial.


Excerpted:


From the full post by David Armano, executive VP, Global Innovation & Integration at Edelman.


while entrepreneurialism seems to be enjoying a golden age of sorts, it isn’t for everyone.


An intrapreneur is someone who has an entrepreneurial streak in his or her DNA, but chooses to align his or her talents with a large organization in place of creating his or her own.


...several years ago when I struck up a conversation with an older gentleman at a train station and I described what I did for a living, he said something I’ll never forget: “Oh, you’re an intrapreneur–so was I.”


...Some of my peers who are doing work in the social business industry also are intrapreneurs whether they suspect it or not:  

  • Scott Monty of Ford, 
  • Ekaterina Walter of Intel, 
  • Richard Binhammer of Dell, 
  • Pete Blackshaw of Nestlé, 
  • Bonin Bough of Kraft and 
  • Frank Eliason of Citi, to name a few.


The start-up community has successfully demonstrated that the modern world needs entrepreneurs.


But this only makes intrapreneurs more critical, because in a world filled with fast-moving change, a large organization that becomes complacent and loses sight of the benefits of having an entrepreneurial streak built into their massive global systems can find themselves disrupted in short order.


This is where intrapreneurs come in handy. Smart organizations will seek out individuals who like to invent, innovate and want to be on the front lines of change. 


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The 12 Masters of Innovation - Perspectives, Slideshare, Harvard Business Review

The 12 Masters of Innovation - Perspectives, Slideshare, Harvard Business Review | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

Worth a good look on leadership in innovation.


Some of who are listed include these educators:


Steve Blank, a seasoned entrepreneur who lectures at Berkeley and Stanford

His most important innovation lesson:

  • A startup is a "temporary organization searching for a repeatable and scalable business model"—a structured search process maximizes your chances of success.
  • If you read one book, read: The Four Steps to the Epiphany (Cafepress.com, 2005)


Clayton Christensen, Harvard Business School professor and Innosight co-founder.
His most important innovation lesson:

  • Doing everything right can leave a successful organization susceptible to attack from a disruptive innovator who changes the game with a simple, accessible, or affordable solution.
  • If you read one book, read: The Innovator's Solution (with Michael Raynor; Harvard Business Review Press, 2003)


Peter Drucker, legendary management guru and long-time professor at the Claremont Graduate University
  • His most important innovation lesson: "The customer rarely buys what the company thinks it is selling him." Companies need to take a customer-first perspective to succeed with innovation.
  • If you read one book, read: Innovation and Entrepreneurship (originally published in 1985)



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Thrivers who Beat Innovation's Toll on the American Corporation | Wall Street Journal

Thrivers who Beat Innovation's Toll on the American Corporation | Wall Street Journal | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

Creative destruction is looming over companies like Kodak and Barnes & Noble, focusing American executive minds on two questions:

  1. Are large companies able to innovate quickly enough in an age of rapid disruption?
  2. And if they can, how do they do it?


This WSJ article offers up what I've seen as a recurring theme: 

  • The large companies that do manage to survive are ruthless about change.
  • The most successful ones aren't afraid to cannibalize their big revenue generators to build new businesses.


Thrivers: 

  • Johnson & Johnson, founded in 1886
  • International Business Machines Corp. just celebrated its 100th birthday
  • 35-year-old Apple Inc. has transformed itself from a small PC maker into a kingpin of mobile devices
  • Google Corp., founded in 1998, is finding new ways to grow beyond its core search engine advertising business


Top executives at successful big companies are a lot like those at small companies, said James W. Breyer, a partner at Facebook Inc. investor Accel Partners and a director at Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Dell Inc.


Mr. Breyer described these executives as very smart, and able to diversify into new businesses while staying focused on a company's core.




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Innovation, Impact, Change Words: Enough Talk, More Do | The Nonprofit Quarterly

Innovation, Impact, Change Words: Enough Talk, More Do | The Nonprofit Quarterly | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

This matches my current experience.  Does it match yours in the fields of innovation and change leadership?

 

Excerpt:  If you’re a nonprofit news junkie, you know it’s nearly impossible to go a day without reading or hearing the words “innovation” and “impact.

"It’s little surprise, then, that collective eyes are beginning to roll when the terms innovation and impact are tossed around with little explication as to what they look like on the ground and within a more systematic framework. So, maybe it’s time to start putting our money where our mouths are and get serious about assessing what, exactly, is true innovation; and, most important, what are the kinds of innovation that lead to real impact—especially those that can be rigorously assessed and measured..."  Source:  @npquarterly 


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Where is Your Anchor for Innovation? Be a Leader Not a Hero | Forbes

Where is Your Anchor for Innovation? Be a Leader Not a Hero | Forbes | Innovation & Institutions, Will it Blend? | Scoop.it

“Managers want authority,” says Seth Godin, author, keynoter and entrepreneur.  “Leaders take responsibility.”

 

In entrepreneurship the comparison isn’t between managers and leaders. It is between leaders and heroes.

 

In the six years that I’ve been following, studying and supporting entrepreneurs, I’ve found that none are interested in being managers. That is counterintuitive to their innate passion and impatience to innovate.

 

...depending on where that passion and impatience to innovate is anchored, entrepreneurs can either be leaders or heroes.

 

Those that chose to become leaders are confidently tied to a vision, knowing, as Godin points out, “where they’d like to go” and understanding that “they can’t get there without their tribe.”

 

Those that are heroes, however, are caught up in the ego, convinced that without them no success can be achieved.

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