Arnold Carbone shared his thought leadership with regards to his R&D experience with Ben and Jerry’s during a recent @AIGARenoTahoe event @theBasementReno which reminded me of the behaviors we must have in order to evolve as we develop products and services.
Mentoring, market research, business plan development, etc. are all critical milestones in our business lives; this talk reminded me that as an entrepreneur or product manager, we must constantly be re-inventing our approaches. It’s no longer about the solid channel strategies and programs, but actually the talent we hire and inspire. We must have talent that innovates with the letter R.
We must have people on our ‘team bus’ who understand the importance of knowing their audience yet can flex in VUCA world to listen, advocate, influence, engage and execute. These are no small tasks. I’ve found these individuals are comfortable to constantly learn, re-invent themselves, seek out fast feedback and incorporate it into their work styles and approaches. Additionally, they have high integrity and are quick to translate the key business objectives through their day to day actions. From the tactical activities such as influencing internal stakeholders or executive sponsors.
As I sat at the Old Post Office inside an art deco building in Reno, Nevada, I was reminded that whether your customer is a high tech executive or a scoop shop owner, we must invest in building skills which start with the letter R in our future leaders if we want to continue to have products such as Phish Food in our lives.
Resourceful, Relentless, Revolutionary Innovation, Resilience and Responsibility
Many of our organizations have enterprise communication and collaboration systems in place. These systems are evolving and creating new communication possibilities. Yet, I continue to find education gaps as it relates to leadership, communication and human effectiveness education that is aligned with them. We are allowing our children to check into online portals to get fast feedback on their ‘tests’ yet we may not teach the foundations of respectful debate and critical thinking.
I have found the work of Dion Hinchcliffe useful to help people visual the pivot that has been taking place. He states, ” The pace of advance today can seem overwhelming.” I believe, a key thread that we must knit together as community facilitators is to invite individuals, teams, groups and organizations to look at our people, our processes and our technologies without judgment. We must look at them at be open to throwing out the past and inviting in new futures with brand new approaches, models and methods so that we can navigate our journey. I have found some people are reluctant to start over or re-invent within organizations. Perhaps it is too risky? Not sure, but what I do know is that talent will go to start ups and/or to a competitor in an effort to find a new environment that is more aligned with their preferred interaction style and culture.
I was inspired to article by John Kotter around change leadership. He states, “How does culture change? A powerful person at the top, or a large enough group from anywhere in the organization, decides the old ways are not working, figures out a change vision, starts acting differently, and enlists others to act differently.”
Several people have asked me how to blog and get a style, so this is a brief attempt to share a few thoughts around see one, do one, and be one.
• Consider reading and searching around the internet, on-line resources, books, magazines or libraries. What I mean by that is: simply spend a few minutes reading content from industry experts, peers or your mentors. This can give you context on styles you relate to and/or inspire you.
• Secondly. Just do it. Most organizations encourage learning. If you are reading this, you can look into wordpress to post a blog, so all you need to do is create a blog title, write down a paragraph, run spell check and post. Don’t over think it. Just do it. Take a few moments to share something you have recently shared over the telephone with a family member, customer, business associate or partner and try to ‘capture it’ in words. If you can’t do that. Record yourself or ask someone else to do it. Actually I find it is a good opportunity to self-reflect and learn about your communication in general if you listen to yourself speak or present.
• Seek peer input. I often find that if I ask for feedback that I will get it. What I mean, is be explicit with your friends, family, staff, peers or your management. Ask them to carve out time to give you their candid feedback on what they would do if they were you, who influences their communication approaches and/or areas they see as ‘development opportunities’ for you to consider.