The 5% Factor: Embedding Innovation in Organizational Culture


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A framework for keeping both minds and culture open as a regular practice - 5% of the time - with the other 95% dedicated to ongoing execution. This presentation was created for a 30-minute round robin session for Human Resources Executive Forum, 05.25.10

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  • Tremendous challenges: economy, demographics, energy, etc. that are real, structural, deep  get ready! But greatest challenge is preparing for increasing complexity and rate of change while managing overwhelming pressures to deliver now
  • GE’s L.I.G. program: The eternal management challenge of balancing the short term and the long term— or simultaneously managing the present and creating the future—was explicitly addressed. Immelt: As he explained in the company’s 2007 an­nual report, the program’s aim was “to embed growth into the DNA of our company.” By that he meant getting the teams leading the businesses to think about organic growth day in and day out—to be constantly on the look­ out for opportunities and to create inspira­tional strategic visions that would enlist their troops in the cause. He wanted them to weave innovation and growth into every aspect of their businesses.
  • CHANGE: Take it! Take all of it! Make the most of it! 1 ST : Understand the systems, how things work 2 nd : Ask BIG questions (find intersection of trends with your interests/I.P./emerging opportunities) 3 rd : Choose and act, choose, and act, choose and act CHOOSE! You can choose to be patient or impatient…Fearful or courageous…Resistant or enthusiastic…
  • The 4 Forces of Change are Predictable Constant Universal
  • Short-term gains always have the upper hand. Need to “make sense” of the future!
  • Problem-solving, creativity, insight , “knowing” are the same phenomenon, neurologically Our imagination is constrained by two things: Quantity and diversity of memories Associative fluency Antidote: POUR & STIR
  • Design processes to support dominant functions and modalities of the two hemispheres Meetings are the best tool for reports and updates, but ill-suited to problem-solving Ideation = Left brain; solution-driven Innovation = Right brain ; inquiry-driven
  • ALL progress is iterative!! Continued refinement of questions and of exploration reveals better material over time. Don’t get stopped waiting to ‘figure it out’ first. It’s an innovation-killer. Beware of Best Practicide!
  • Market and cultural trends occur at the surface and reveal more about how we’re currently adapting to change. By the time you’re tracking them, the window of opportunity for innovation is nearly gone.
  • The four forces = 4 pillars of human society: Resources (naturally-occurring assets) Technology (tools for extracting value from assets, and inventing new forms) Demographics (composition and size is a major determinant of group’s sustainability Governance (rules of law and markets; social constructions for distributing and managing assets within the group)
  • Critical thresholds in food, land, water, energy, environment, climate Acute and potentially dramatic tipping points
  • Extending our capabilities in every realm. Enormous challenges to our values and world views. Merging capacities in G.R.I.N. technologies: Genetics Robotics Information Technology Nanotechnology
  • One of the biggest challenges, dismayingly absent from most strategic discussions
  • Rules of law are generally reactive; markets are better at leading. The two work together to shape our future, and is how/where we can effect change.
  • Pour & Stir!!!!
  • Discovery = don’t know what you’re going to find. Lead with “Like That!” exercises and play to see what emerges
  • Problem Solving KNOW: Study structural and systemic factors Define issue in those terms Determine your Best Question NEW: Explore Invent DO: Execute 5% Factor
  • If you’re not busy creating the future, you’re just busy! A terrible waste of your most precious resources: time and talent
  • Short-term = Duh! Mid-term = Love it!! Long-term = OMG!!!!
  • Built-in efficiencies among intellectual property, product development, markets, etc. Get it tight into quarterly outcomes and deliverables.
  • 5% New is the key to anticipating and leading change within your organization
  • Worked for these guys… Also public utilities, universities, NGOs, Silicon Valley start-ups
  • The real key to strategy
  • The 5% Factor: Embedding Innovation in Organizational Culture

    1. 1. THE 5% FACTOR Leading Change in a Need-it-Now World Cecily Sommers President, The Push Institute HREF_05.25.10 <ul><li>“ The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago.” </li></ul>
    2. 2. © Cecily Sommers, 2010 95% Execution 5% Exploration
    4. 5. Q: Why is it that, even when we Know better, we don’t Do better <ul><ul><li>A: We have to learn how to New better! </li></ul></ul>
    5. 6. © Cecily Sommers, 2010 Learning, Memory Senses Left Hemisphere Language Right Hemisphere Imagery Motivation & Emotion Autonomic System: Pain, Arousal
    6. 7. <ul><li>L: Know </li></ul><ul><li>R: New </li></ul><ul><li>L: Do </li></ul>Forward March! © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    7. 8. © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    8. 9. law technology resources demographics markets
    9. 11. <ul><ul><li>Earth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ocean </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Space </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Climate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Energy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Water </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Land </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Food </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sun </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Animals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Habitat </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minerals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Forest </li></ul></ul>Resources Four Forces © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    10. 12. <ul><ul><li>Genetics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Robotics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nanotechnology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Health care </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Collaboration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Virtual reality </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Games </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Telephony </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Manufacturing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Infrastructure </li></ul></ul>Technology Four Forces © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    11. 13. <ul><ul><li>6.1 B in 2000 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>9B in 2050 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Developing ++ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Industrial --- </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Immigration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multi-cultural </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multi-lingual </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nationalism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Conflict </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Capital formation </li></ul></ul>Demographics Four Forces © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    12. 14. <ul><ul><li>Economies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Law </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Infrastructure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social Movements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Transparency </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Emerging markets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tribalism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Polarization </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Innovation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>e-Polity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Corruption </li></ul></ul>Governance Four Forces © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    13. 15. <ul><ul><li>Business need </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Futures research </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Brand experience </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>New technologies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scenario development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Outside experts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Experiential exploration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Like That” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Fill the Box” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Having it all </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Duh!,” “Love it!”, High Risk/Reward </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Chunking it down </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>First Movable Piece </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deliverables, resource requests, Q-2-Q </li></ul></ul>ZONE OF DISCOVERY © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    14. 16. <ul><li>“ Like That!” </li></ul><ul><li>Play </li></ul><ul><li>Time out </li></ul>Pour & Stir © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    16. 18. <ul><li>Assumptions, Outcomes, Resources </li></ul><ul><li>10 Years </li></ul><ul><li>5 years </li></ul><ul><li>2 years </li></ul><ul><li>1 year </li></ul><ul><li>6 months </li></ul><ul><li>3 months… </li></ul>Plan in Reverse © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    17. 19. THE NEW I.P. <ul><li>  </li></ul>© Cecily Sommers, 2010
    18. 20. INNOVATION PORTFOLIO <ul><li>  </li></ul>© Cecily Sommers, 2010
    19. 21. <ul><li>Marching Forward </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity (BQ) </li></ul><ul><li>Pour & Stir </li></ul><ul><li>Form (BP) </li></ul>Know Better, New Better, Do Better © Cecily Sommers, 2010
    20. 22. GE: Consistent Investment in R&D <ul><li>Each year we put 6 percent of our industrial revenue back into technologies. </li></ul><ul><li>So much that more than half the products we sell today didn't exist 10 years ago. </li></ul><ul><li>An American renewal has to be built on technology. </li></ul><ul><li>Our R&D budget is the one budget that isn't being cut in this downturn, and that's a course of action I'd recommend to every company that wants to get through this economic crisis even stronger than before. </li></ul>
    21. 23. CLIENTS
    22. 24. <ul><li>God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;  courage to change the things I can; </li></ul><ul><li>and wisdom to know the difference. </li></ul>The Serenity Prayer
    23. 25. THANK YOU CECILY SOMMERS website email [email_address] phone 612.374.3191 twitter cecilysommers