On Creativity, Innovation, and Renewal: A Leader to Leader Guide / Edition 1

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Overview

On Creativity, Innovation, and Renewal features the best thinking from top experts on strategic innovation, sparking creativity, and transforming organizations. Written in a concise style that is ideal for the busy executive with little spare time, the book presents a stellar roster of contributors. On Creativity, Innovation, and Renewal is one title in the Leader to Leader Guides, which draw from the most compelling articles that have appeared in Leader to Leader, the Drucker Foundation's award-winning journal.

Learn about Creativity, Innovation, and Renewal from these Thought Leaders John Seely Brown James Champy Stephen Jay Gould Gary Hamel Frances Hesselbein Randy Komisar Dorothy Leonard Costas Markides Nigel Nicholson Harriet Rubin Patricia B. Seybold Peter Skarzynski Walter Swap Noel Tichy

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Twelve essays and interviews drawn from the Drucker Foundation's journal include "How Managers Can Spark Creativity" by Dorothy Leonard and Walter Swap; "The Challenge of Strategic Innovation" by Costas Markides; and an interview with Stephen Jay Gould in which he discusses the limited basis for applying concepts of natural evolution to organizational theory. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Frances Hesselbein is chairman of the board of governors of the Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonprofit Management and editor-in-chief of its journal Leader to Leader. She is also the lead editor for the best-selling Drucker Foundation Future Series. Hesselbein served as CEO of the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. from 1976 to 1990 and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States' highest civilian honor, in 1998.

Rob Johnston is president and CEO of the Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonprofit Management. He was executive producer for Leading in a Time of Change, a 2001 video featuring Peter F. Drucker and Peter M. Senge and for the Nonprofit Leader of the Future video teleconference. He is a senior editor for the Leader to Leader journal, and has contributed a chapter to Enterprising Nonprofits (Wiley, 2001).

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Read an Excerpt

1

When the Roll Is Called in 2010

Frances Hesselbein

To be sustainable, an organization must scan its environment to identify major trends; review its mission and refine it to reflect changes in the environment; abandon outdated views and practices; develop strategic goals that embody its desired future, based on its mission and values; and measure performance based on these. It must cultivate innovation; finance the few initiatives that will make a difference; deploy resources where they will have the most impact; refine communication; provide continuous learning opportunities; initiate job rotation and expansion; create a marketing mind-set; listen to the customer; and recognize technology as a tool, not a driver. It must create dispersed, fluid leadership; facilitate leadership development and transition; focus on strengths rather than weaknesses; increase diversity; form strategic partnerships; and contribute to the community.

I was struggling to write this article about what leaders and organizations must do, today, to be viable and relevant 10 years from now. I told Rob Johnston, our president, that I thought the title would be "When the Roll Is Called in 2010." He left and shortly returned to my office with a Web site printout of a great old hymn I remember from my Methodist Sunday School days: "When the Roll Is Called Up Yonder, I'll Be There." That wasn't exactly what I had in mind.

My concern is with how our actions today shape our legacy. Building a sustainable organization is one of a leader's primaryresponsibilities. When the challenges of today have been met, will your organization have the vigor to grow tomorrow? When the roll is called in 2010, will your organization be present?

Few social observers project that the years 2001-2010 will be easy ones for organizations in the public, private, and social sectors. Instead, tenuous, turbulent, and tough are the descriptors I hear when thought leaders evoke the future. But inclusive, wide open, and promising are part of the picture as well.

To meet the challenges and opportunities of the years to come requires hard work. My checklist—not for survival but for a successful journey to 2010—includes the following points:

  • Revisiting the mission in 2003, 2006, and 2009, each time refining or amending it so that it reflects shifts in the environment and the changing needs of changing customers as part of a formal self-assessment process.


  • Mobilizing the total organization around mission, until everyone including the newest secretary and the worker on the loading dock can tell you the mission of the enterprise— why it does what it does, its reason for being, its purpose.


  • Developing no more than five powerful strategic goals that, together, are the board's vision of the desired future of the organization.


  • Focusing on those few initiatives that will make a difference— not skimming the surface of an overstuffed list of priorities. Focus is key.


  • Deploying people and allocating resources where they will have an impact, that is, only where they can further the mission and achieve the few powerful goals.


  • Practicing Peter Drucker's "planned abandonment": jettisoning current policies, practices, and assumptions as soon as it becomes clear they will have little relevance in the future.


  • Navigating the many streams of venture philanthropy, whether gearing up for the "ask" or as a philanthropist seeking to make an investment in changing the lives of people by partnering with a social sector organization.


  • Expanding the definition of communication from saying something to being heard.


  • Providing board members and the entire staff and workforce with carefully planned continuing learning opportunities designed to increase the capacity and unleash the creative energy of the people of the organization.


  • Developing the leadership mind-set that embraces innovation as a life force, not as a technological improvement.


  • Adopting Peter Drucker's definition: Innovation is change that creates a new dimension of performance.


  • Structuring the finances of the organization—whether as seeker or funder in the social sector, business, or government— so that income streams are focused on the few great initiatives that will change lives, build community, and make a measurable difference.


  • Transforming performance measurement into a management imperative that moves beyond the old forms and assumptions and toward creative and inclusive approaches to "measuring what we value and valuing what we measure."


  • Scanning the environment and identifying major trends and implications for the organization in preparation for riding the wave of rapidly changing demographics.


  • Building a mission-focused, values-based, demographics-driven organization.


  • Planning for leadership transition in a thoughtful way. Leaving well and at the right moment is one of the greatest gifts a leader can give to the organization.


  • Grooming successors—not a chosen one but a pool of gifted potential leaders. This is part of the leader's daily challenges.


  • Making job rotation and job expansion into widespread organizational practices that are part of planning for the future.


  • Dispersing the tasks of leadership across the organization until there are leaders at every level and dispersed leadership is the reality.


  • Leading from the front, with leaders the embodiment of the mission and values in thinking, action, and communication.


  • Recognizing technology not as driver but as tool. Changing the technology as needs change, not changing needs and style to match the tool. Shaping the future, not being shaped by it.


  • Permeating every job, every plan with a marketing mind-set. Marketing means being close to the customer and listening and responding to what the customer values.


  • Building on strengths instead of dwelling on weaknesses until the organization has succeeded in, as Peter Drucker says, "making the strengths of our people effective and their weaknesses irrelevant."


  • Throwing out the old hierarchy and building flexible, fluid, circular management systems with inclusive leadership language to match.


  • Allocating funds for leadership development opportunities and resources for all the people of the enterprise.


  • Developing the richly diverse organization so that board, management team, staff, employees, faculty, administration, and all communications materials reflect the diversity of the community, and we can respond with a resounding yes to the critical question: "When they look at us, can they find themselves?"


  • Making every leader—every person who directs the work of others—accountable for building the richly diverse team, group, or organization.


  • Keying individual performance appraisals to organizational performance.


  • Governance is governance. Management is management. Sharply differentiating between the two by delineating clear roles, responsibilities, and accountabilities, resulting in a partnership of mutual trust and purpose. Building the partnership on open communication, adopting the philosophy of no surprises.


  • Using a common leadership and management language within the organization and beyond with people and organizations in all three sectors around the world.


  • Leading beyond the walls of the enterprise and building the organization's share of the healthy, cohesive community. Forming partnerships, alliances, and collaborations that spell synergy, success, and significance.


  • This checklist for viability is only a beginning. Changing circumstances will require additions as new challenges arise, and deletions where needs have been met. New customers must be welcomed as we move beyond the old walls both physically and psychologically.


  • Tomorrow may be tenuous for the leader and organization of the future, but the message is clear and powerful: Managing for mission, innovation, and diversity will sustain us and those we serve on the long journey to 2010.

Frances Hesselbein is editor in chief of Leader to Leader, chairman of the board of governors of the Drucker Foundation, and former chief executive of the Girl Scouts of the U.S.A.

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Table of Contents

Introduction.

About the Editors.

1. When the Role Is Called in 2010 (Frances Hesselbein).

2. Innovation: The New Route to New Wealth (Gary Hamel and Peter Skarzynski).

3. The Spice of Life (An Interview with Stephen Jay Gould).

4. Gene Politics and the Natural Selection of Leaders (Nigel Nicholson).

5. The Growth Imperative (Noel Tichy).

6. How Managers Can Spark Creativity (Dorothy Leonard and Walter Swap).

7. The Business Case for Passion (An Interview with Randy Komisar).

8. Sustaining the Ecology of Knowledge (John Seely Brown).

9. Making the Leap to Internet Time (Patricia B. Seybold).

10. The Residue of Leadership: Why Ambition Matters (James Champy).

11. The Challenge of Strategic Innovation (Costas Markides).

12. The New Merchants of Light (Harriet Rubin).

Index.

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