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领导力

企业要创新,先从这四件事开始

Kristen Bellstrom 2017年10月16日

《财富》最具影响力女性峰会带来的启示。

创新是企业界最青睐的时髦词汇之一,但我们停下来并探究其真正含义的次数有多少呢?

本上周一,科技巨擘微软首席体验官朱莉•拉尔森-格林在《财富》最具影响力女性峰会上提出的定义是“想法加影响”,这个定义对该公司员工来说一直都很有帮助。

拉尔森-格林说,无论有怎样的颠覆性并且如何令人兴奋,想法只是一丝闪念,除非它能对世界产生实质性影响。当然,关键往往是把这些新鲜的尖端概念转化为现实。至于实现方法,拉尔森-格林和峰会上的其他发言人为听众介绍了一系列实践窍门。

转换思路

花旗集团拉美业务CEO简•弗雷泽说,害怕变化是人类天性,但恐惧会扼杀创新,“要把恐惧心理赶走”。她建议说,不要把员工放在“被告席”上,让他们觉得需要保护自己的工作并为之找到正当理由,试着鼓励用创新帮助其客户的方式把他们团结起来。弗雷泽表示,花旗银行也越来越重视激发员工的好奇心并鼓励他们问问题。

颠覆自己的领导

埃森哲北美业务CEO朱莉•斯威特认为,实现持续创新最大的难点就是愿意改变领导方式。她说:“这对领导者来说往往是最困难的事情。”不过,尽管 “团队中一些人无法伴随其走完创新旅程。”但更换忠心耿耿的团队成员仍可能令人痛苦。斯威特同时指出,建立一个性别、年龄和种族上都真正多元化的领导团队将有助于带来新的思路。如果企业拒绝这样的彻底变革,就不会真正实现创新,“那么留给你的就是空想。”

考虑自己的商业目标

Nest首席技术官松冈容子指出,虽然所有公司都需要创新,但为了颠覆而颠覆不会起作用。以松冈和同事们共同建立的Google X,也就是谷歌超级神秘的创新实验室为例。这个团队创造了“教科书式的变革”技术,但“他们赚不到钱”。她问听众:“这是大多数公司所追求的吗?”(许多人都摇了摇头)。“为自己的Google X许愿时要小心,因为你得到的也许并不是你想要的。”

专注

松冈容子说,猜想中的变革不可预测,而且正迅速朝我们奔来。但实际上,“创新的速度真的很慢,它不像我们想的那么吓人。”她估计,如果把峰会上的发言人组成一个团队,那么她们或许可以找出约90%的今后几年将改变企业的力量。松冈容子建议,不要去追赶潮流或者竞争对手,所有公司都应该问自己一个问题:“我们都知道要出现的是这些东西,那么我们应该集中在哪一个上面呢?”(财富中文网)

译者:Charlie

“Innovation” is one of the business world’s most beloved buzzwords—but how often do we stop and ask ourselves what the term really means?

Speaking at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit in Washington, D.C. on Monday, Julie Larson-Green, chief experience officer at Microsoft, offered a definition that’s been helpful for employees of the tech giant: “Idea plus impact.”

No matter how disruptive and exciting, she says, an idea is just a flight of fancy—unless it can create a meaningful impact in the world. Of course, the trick of the thing is usually turning those new, bleeding-edge concepts into a reality. Larson-Green and her fellow Summit panelists offered the crowd a series of real world tips for doing just that.

Change the mindset

It’s human nature to be afraid of change—but fear kills innovation, says Jane Fraser, CEO of Latin America at Citigroup: “Get fear out of the equation.” Rather than putting employees on the defensive, where they feel they need to protect and justify their jobs, try to rally them around the ways innovation can help their clients, she suggests. Citibank has also increasingly focused on encouraging workers’ curiosity and prompting them to ask questions, says Fraser.

Disrupt your leadership

Julie Sweet, CEO of North America for Accenture, says that one of the most difficult parts of achieving continuous innovation is being willing to change leadership. “That is often the hardest thing for leaders to hear,” says Sweet. But while replacing loyal team members can be painful, “some of them can’t make the journey.” Creating a leadership team that’s truly diverse—gender, age, ethnicity—helps drive fresh thinking, she adds. When companies resist such sweeping change, you don’t get true innovation, says Sweet: “Then you get projects.”

Consider your business goals

While every company needs innovation, disruption for disruption’s sake does not work, says Nest CTO Yoky Matsuoka. Take Google’s super secret innovation lab, Google X, which Matsuoka co-founded. The group creates “paradigm shifting” technology, she says, but “they’re not making money.” “Is that what most companies are looking for?” she asked the audience (many heads shook no). “Be careful asking for a Google X because what you get might not be what you’re looking for.”

Focus

The hype around change is that it’s unpredictable and rushing at us at a furious paces, says Matuoka. But in reality, “innovation happens really, really slowly—it’s not as scary as we think.” She speculated that, as a group, the panel attendees would likely be able to identify about 90% of the forces that will transform business over the next few years. Rather than chase trends—or your competitors—Matuoka suggests all companies ask themselves one question: “Given we all understand those things are coming, which one should we focus on?”

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