October 2012

The video below is from an article with a somewhat deceptive title, What Twitter Can Teach You About Your Dysfunctional Business.  Integrating social media into a cohesive communication strategy is tricky.  If your organization is having trouble with this it does not automatically mean your business is dysfunctional.  I recommend watching the 2 1/2 minute video to get some good insights about the challenges with this and ways to mitigate the risks.


The best tool for leaders of change is to understand the predictable, universal sources of resistance in each situation and then strategize around them.

Rosabeth Moss Kanter provided 10 reasons people resist change on Harvard Business Review’s blog.  She teaches at Harvard Business School.  She writes books.  I don’t do either of those things so it would be folly for me to critique her.

However, I see a common denominator in her tips.  Transparency is the key.  Employees don’t need to know all the details but they want to know what’s up and how they fit into the plan.

I listened to a webinar on developing organizational innovation recently.  The excerpts below are from this presentation.  Click here to download the entire 45 minute presentation.

  • The term “innovation” has been used in so many different ways that it has almost lost its meaning.
  • Innovation doesn’t really mean the same as invention.  Its about new things and new approaches but its not the same as invention.
  • Innovation does not mean technology.  Technology is not required for innovation.  Obviously its going to help facilitate but its not the same thing.  It doesn’t mean redefining an industry.
  • Innovation is the creation of something new which when its implemented leads to a positive, measurable outcome.

People: Not all organizations need to have that one legendary innovative leader.  Organizations who have innovation in their DNA have leaders who are discovery driven vs. delivery driven.  The engage in questioning, observing, connecting the dots.  It has to be everybody’s job to maintain that sense of organizational curiosity.  It begins with leadership at all levels of the organization.  This filters down to people who want to be a part of the discovery process.

Process: Operational processes and accountability are the baseline from which an organization can innovate.  Process is essential for maintaining that sense of shared accountability.

Philosophy: How do you take innovation from the mission statement and make it part of how you do business?  You must allow people to take risks and make mistakes.  People learn when they make mistakes in the right places.  The key is to go back and help them understand what went wrong.  Everyone has to understand and be accountable for where  in their job are they allowed to make mistakes and learn from them and where are the critical areas where there is less leeway.

Nothing exhausts me more than chronic complaining.  If people only knew what effect this had on others.  I often find myself wondering what I am expected to do?  I listen and try to be supportive but usually I can’t correct whatever is bothering the person.

Chronic complaining is an easy habit to fall into, far easier than getting in or staying in a positive mindset.  I find that when some people get into a negative mindset they never come out of it.  For some reason there is comfort there.

That is why I love this post on Inc magazine’s website.    At some point people get tired of being around negativity.

Combating negative thinking requires effort.  Use the tips in the post to break bad habits.  You will have to commit to them and stick with it.  Change won’t happen right away but its worth it.