Organisations that have all the money, talent and technology in the world are struggling to innovate with deadly consequences. Why?
The most important reason out of the above is number 3; the senior leaders stop caring about serving their customer. Instead, they prefer to serve themselves the easiest and most profitable path to success. Innovation is hard and risky; it’s much easier to force your customer to use your tired product/service offering over and over again than create new value propositions. Let us look at some examples:
To remain relevant, it is important to focus on the speed of innovation. Even if organisations manage to create some innovation, they fail to do it fast enough. Nokia, Blockbuster and Kodak are all examples of being far too slow. They think they can ‘gradually feed in the disruptive change’. Kodak honestly believed you would still be buying photographic film from them in 2016. The basic fact is that the senior management of most organisations today fail to understand the speed of 21st Century VUCA change and are years if not decades out of sync with what is really happening on the ground.
How can it be that senior managers don’t know what is happening on the ground? Because they stopped caring about what really matters. When leaders stop caring about their product and its impact, about their customers and their staff, and only obsesses about quarterly reports, their organisation is doomed because it will never innovate and it will never be able to keep up with today’s change. When you care, you connect with the world around you and strive to deliver the best possible product to your customers even if it means disrupting the way you do things. Your commitment to excellent is what compels you to break down what you do so you can re-build yourself to be even better.
Looking at the next decade; the most comfortable, slow and uncaring industries I can see are automotive, education, healthcare & finance. Tesla, Google & Apple will lead the charge (pun intended) backed by a flood of new Chinese brands and resurgent Asian manufacturers. The old guard in auto will rapidly find themselves on the wrong foot and facing irrelevance; too old and slow to change. In education, there will be a bloodbath as the new ‘Generation Z’, having seen their brothers and sisters waste their lives and money at university only to end up lost, unemployed and/or underemployed, go elsewhere. With employers largely disinterested in your academic qualifications, new providers such as Hackreactor will spring up to prepare talent for the needs of the labour camp (market, I meant market). In healthcare, the basic failure to provide effective personalised medicine will provide massive new opportunities, especially in the booming Asian markets where the rapidly-ageing population in ASEAN & China will drive continuous healthcare breakthroughs. Finally, banks. Customers will reward the incompetence of their existing providers by going elsewhere. New currencies will rise with the new generation; you aren’t going to use Bitcoin but your daughter will. She will wonder why you put up with the misery of outrageous bank fees and scandalous currency conversion issues. Companies like Transferwise are already changing the game, there are many more behind them in the rapidly growing ‘fintech’ space. If you are a player in any of these markets, and you are not leading innovation efforts that are disrupting your business model right now, you are in deep trouble. Here some examples of companies getting it right.
The bottom line is that companies fail to innovate because senior managers are not prepared to disrupt their existing business models. Instead of searching for better value propositions (which is risky and hard), they prefer the easier route of selling the same stuff over and over again. Of those that try to innovate, most of them are far too slow because they underestimate the market or they find the change too inconvenient. The difference comes down to how much you care, how connected you are to your customer and how far you are willing to go for them. Great leaders are willing to disrupt themselves to be excellent, average leaders get comfortable. Who do you want to be?
To find out more about Leadapreneur's approach to creating agile innovation and helping companies disrupt themselves, visit www.Leadapreneur.com
A tool to bring answers
What really excites us at Leadapreneur is to see how much impact we can have on a generation of young and eager talent with a simple yet powerful tool: the Lifepath.
"What would I like to do after graduating from high school?"
"Do I want to become an entrepreneur?"
"Should I take a gap year?"
"Do I want to go into university? And if so, what course should I study?"
These are some of the questions students ask themselves, regardless of their grades, gender and background and worries we have come across in our workshops over and over again.
This is because the last year of high school is a key turning point in a young person's life as they are about to make their first major life decisions and enter adulthood. This can be a very daunting step, especially when not having a large understanding as to what lays outside of the school bubble and what opportunities are available to them based on their strengths, passions & reality.
A fast-moving world
The world today as it is experienced by the Millennials (born between 1982 and 2004) is very different from what it used to be for the generations that came before them.
One of the ways it is different is that in the past career paths used to be very linear and development opportunities were often constricted within the same firm. Today, however, possibilities are endless and this causes a lot of confusion and a trend of "job-hopping" from one enterprise to another.
According to the most recent Deloitte survey on Millennials at work, "one in four millennials would quit his or her current job to join a new organisation or to do something different". The struggle to engage, develop & retain talent is a major challenge faced by many organisations today and a large part of this is due to the Millennial's lack of clear direction and search for meaning in their life & work. Check our article on "3 reasons your organisation is struggling with its talent".
Our belief at Leadapreneur is that the earlier this is addressed and given a framework , the less anxiety and confusion it will generate for the student. This is why we have decided to put into place a Lifepath journey that begins in grade 11 and continues on all the way through the individual's professional career.
Last week, we had the pleasure to carry out the first step of that journey with our one-day Lifepath workshop at the International School of Phnom Penh with a group of 46 high-school students in grade 11 from seventeen different nationalities.
Here is what they said about it:
It's been an amazing experience attending the Lifepath workshop, it didn't only allow me to think through my career plan but also to understand what more life has to offer and provided me with a clear understanding on how I am the one who controls how I want my life to be."
I really enjoyed the Lifepath workshop: I believe it helped me really think and analyze what my plan is for the next 3 years. Comparing my ideas with my peers was also very useful, so I could ask questions about their life path and see the similarities as well as help each other out with suggestions.
Understanding their past, designing a vision for the future and creating tangible action steps for the present allowed the participants to create their own unique Lifepath, thus gaining the clarity and the confidence required to decide on their next step.
As part of the Leadapreneur vision to have every high school student go through the Lifepath to generate the answers they are looking for we are eager to engage with institutions excited to be part of the change and bring something different and unique to their students.
Created by combining expertise on complex systems science, neurolinguistic programming and 21st Century leadership, the Leadapreneur Lifepath is a practical & powerful solution to a dire need in the education system to provide its students with the confidence and clarity they need to make important decisions regarding their future.
If this is something your school or educational institution is looking for, please contact Bettina Guirkinger at firstname.lastname@example.org to run the Lifepath for your students.
The global talent crisis means that organisations are struggling to recruit, engage, develop and retain their talent. Why is this happening?
The talent crisis is a complex problem that defies quick solutions. However, we can quickly identify at least 3 key reasons organisations are struggling with their talent including the failure of HR to become a true strategic partner in the organisation, the prioritisation of process over individual needs and the difficulty in connecting the purpose of the talent programme with what the organisation actually needs. Let's explore these 3 important issues: