Learn how to set goals that motivate you 5.

Goal setting traps for the inexperienced.

Despite the benefits of goal setting, there are a few limitations of the goal-setting process

First, combining goals with monetary rewards motivates many organization members to establish easy rather than difficult goals. In some cases, employees have negotiated goals with their supervisor that they have already completed. 
Second, goal setting focuses employees on a narrow subset of measurable performance indicators while ignoring aspects of job performance that are difficult to measure. The adage “What gets measured is what gets done” applies here. 
Third, setting performance goals is effective in established jobs, but it may not be effective when organization members are learning a new, complex job.  

Posted in Change Management, Innovation


Creating a safe space for innovation

Understanding how your measures affect employee behaviour

Clayton M. Christensen is the Kim B. Clark Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School. In the business consulting field he is a “rock star.” He is the author of best selling business books and consults on the subject to many global companies.

In his book “The Innovator’s DNA” Christensen prescribes what it takes to be more innovative and to be successful at innovation. Perhaps it is stating the obvious (as far as I am concerned but then again I do understand a little about human behaviour being a psychologist), but one of the keys to success is to create a space for innovation to occur.  What that means is that employees should be able to experiment and trial new ideas without fear of negative consequences if things don’t work out.

“Establishing an Innovation is everyone’s job philosophy requires creating a safe space for others to take on the status quo. Researchers call this psychological safety, in which team members willingly express opinions, take risks, run experiments, and acknowledge mistakes without punishment”.

Another key is to give people time to innovate, obvious once again since how will you be able to experiment with out the time to do so? But when you hear, as I did, employees told to increase their utilization rate to 95% (utilization rate is the percentage of billable time) the only time they have left is the time for toilet and lunch breaks. There is no space for innovation.

Many years ago I consulted to an organization that was serious about innovation. The senior management team created a budget code so that employees could allocate hours to innovation and reduced the utilisation rate down to 80% so that employees could allocate 20% of their work hours towards innovation.  The result was that innovation happened.

The Innovator’s DNA provides a great resource for anyone wanting to create an environment for innovation to flourish, but in order to do so stumbling blocks like the requirement for high utilization rates must be dealt with first.

Posted in Innovation


Group discussion is enough to shatter stereotypes

Group discussion is enough to shatter stereotypes

Having a short group discussion about why a negative stereotype is invalid is enough to overcome that stereotype and improve performance.

Posted in Innovation


Role Plays Lead To Better Decisions

Role Plays Lead To Better Decisions

Researchers from the Wharton Business School and the International Graduate School of Business at the University of Adelaide have proved that role play scenarios which involve participants to figuratively stand in the other person’s shoes (what we call 2nd position) is significantly more effective in forecasting outcomes that the use of experts or merely thinking about the situation.

Posted in Business Management, Innovation, Project Management


Recipe for creating a culture of innovation

Recipe for creating a culture of innovation

1) Teach people how to brainstorm ideas.
2) Allow them the time and budget to experiment.
3) Provide expert help if required - make it easy for your people to ask for help.
4) Do not punish them if they fail.

Posted in Business Management, Change Management, Innovation