In this episode, we are joined by author and journalist, Gillian Tett, to discuss the role anthropology plays in today’s business world. Gillian is the author of the award-winning book, Fool’s Gold, which analyses the origin of the 2008 financial crisis, and most recently, The Silo Effect, and is currently a columnist and US Managing Editor of The Financial Times.
What Was Covered
In this episode, we are joined by Hal Gregersen, author of The Innovator’s DNA, to discuss his latest book, Questions are the Answer. Hal is a Senior Lecturer in Leadership and Innovation and the Executive Director of the Leadership Center at MIT, and has previously taught at Dartmouth College, The World Economic Forum, and the London Business School.
What was covered
In this episode, we are joined by Amy C. Edmondson to discuss her latest book, The Fearless Organization: Creating Psychological Safety in the Workplace for Learning, Innovation, and Growth. Amy is the Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management at the Harvard Business School and is the world expert on psychological safety, a topic recently made famous by the findings of Google’s Project Aristotle, the quest to build the perfect team.
What Was Covered
In this episode, we are joined by writer and speaker, Adam Fisher, to discuss his latest book, Valley of Genius: The Uncensored History of Silicon Valley (As Told by the Hackers, Founders, and Freaks Who Made It Boom). Adam has previously worked as a freelance journalist for a variety of prestigious publications and as Features Editor of New York Magazine and Wired Magazine.
In this episode, we are joined by Wanda Draper, who is the Executive Director at Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture to discuss her experience on the board of a museum and how museums can influence innovation. Wanda has over 40 years of experience in both broadcast and print journalism and has previously worked as Director of Programming at NBC-affiliated WBALTV, Director of Public Information for the Governor of Maryland, and as a reporter for The Baltimore Sun.
In this episode, we are joined by cognitive psychologist, Christopher Chabris, who is perhaps best known for his collaborative research on the Ig Nobel prize-winning ‘Gorillas in Our Midst’ experiment and his subsequent popular psychology book, The Invisible Gorilla. Chris is an Associate Professor of Psychology at Union College in New York and a Senior Investigator at Geisinger Health System.
In this episode, we are joined by Steven MacGregor, who is the founder and CEO of The Leadership Academy of Barcelona and author of Sustaining Executive Performance and his latest book is Chief Wellbeing Officer, in which he discusses the importance of maintaining positive mental health in the workplace. Steven is also an academic specializing in executive education and has taught at Stanford University, IMD at Lausanne, and CIBS in Shanghai.
In this episode, we are joined by author and professor, Ed Hess. Ed has published several notable books on learning and innovation including Learn or Die and his most recent work, Humility is the New Smart: Rethinking Human Excellence in the Smart Machine Age. Ed is currently a professor, Batten Executive-in-Residence and Batten Faculty Fellow at the Darden Graduate Business School at the University of Virginia.
“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm”. So said Winston Churchill, a man who had his fair share of professional disasters to accompany his well known successes.
A less painful and more practical strategy for many of us might be to learn from other people’s mistakes. There can be no doubt that you will encounter unexpected and unwanted outcomes as a result of looking at the world through multiple perspectives, or as a result of changing or adapting your work habits in order to remain fresh and creative. So we all need to be prepared for the inevitable lows and I believe that the key is to quickly identify your mistake and take action.
It is for this reason we ask every guest about their most significant lows, and what they have learned from them.
Given their diversity of backgrounds and perspectives, here are some examples from the trenches about how a few of our highly accomplished guests from Season 4 from the worlds of business, academia, sports, science, and the arts have emerged from there lows and how they take that learning forward to create success.
What was covered:
We believe passionately in the power of multiple perspectives to build and sustain innovation ecosystems.
And yet we are all creatures of habits, following schedules and routines that enable us to continue to perform at high levels, but which might leave us with little room for exploring the new. So unless we proactively seek out fresh perspectives, we run the risk of remaining in our own personal bubbles, surrounded by people who think only like us, so increasing the risk of biases like groupthink, not-invented-here and confirmation bias.
We always ask our guests what they do to remain fresh, to seek out diverse perspectives, and the answers are often surprisingly simple and practical. Here we provide a selection of tactics, all of which are easy to do, but are equally easy not to do. By regularly exercising your innovation muscles, the benefits to you and your organization will build up and compound over time, as these world class performers have discovered.
Season 4 of the Innovation Ecosystem Podcast has been a long one, starting with episode 48, and ending with episode 74. As ever, we have been extremely fortunate to have been able to attract some remarkable guests from the worlds of business, academia, sports, science and the arts, and all of these guests are world-class in their chosen field.
We ask our guests the same three questions, which get to the heart of what it takes as a leader to create an innovation ecosystem in your organization, irrespective of what business you are in, and where you are located. The guests are given these questions in advance so that they can reflect on them and the answers are invariably very insightful. The first of these three questions, "What Have You Changed Your Mind About Recently?" is the topic for this wrap up episode. The other two questions are featured in subsequent episodes.
The inspiration for the first question came from Charlie Munger, who in many respects constitutes one of the main wellsprings of inspiration for the Innovation Ecosystem.
Several years ago Charlie Munger made the following statement: “a year in which you do not change your mind on some big idea that is important to you is a wasted year”. This question gets to the heart of the unconscious biases that we as individuals all suffer from. Many of us go through life seeking confirmatory evidence to reinforce our decisions. Sometimes however, we are able to overcome this confirmation bias and change our minds on something big. From a business point of view it is key that you are able to overcome the organizational biases like "not invented here" syndrome, groupthink, the halo effect, stereotyping: this is how we can start to look at the market differently, to build our innovation muscles, to innovate around multiple value drivers, to change our perspective and the perspectives of those around us. So this is why we ask our guests this question, and the answers are fascinating.
In this episode, we are joined by economist and entrepreneur, Ricardo Amorim. Ricardo is founder and CEO of Ricam Consultoria, a financial and investment consultancy, and recent startups AAA Academy and Smartrips. Ricardo is also the author of the best-selling book, After the Storm, is a host on Brazil’s leading news channel, GloboNews, and is a lecturer and keynote speaker.
In this episode, we are joined by entrepreneur and innovation influencer, Jean-Claude Bastos. Jean-Claude is the founder of Quantum Global Group, Banco Kwanza, Angola’s first investment bank, and The African Innovation Foundation (AIF), which aims to support sustainable projects in Africa and hosts the annual Innovation Prize for Africa.
In this episode, writer, speaker, and intrapreneur, Gib Bulloch, joins us to discuss his newly released book, The Intrapreneur: Confessions of a Corporate Insurgent. He spent 20 years at Accenture where he started Accenture Development Partnerships (ADP), a buinsess unit set up to leverage that business’s expertise and experience in service of global development organizations.Gib now works as a consultant specializing in intrapreneurship, social enterprise, and cross-sectoral partnerships. He is also a noted public speaker and has contributed to The Huffington Post, Businessweek, and The Stanford Social Innovation Review.
In this episode, we are joined by Whitney Johnson to discuss her upcoming book, Build an A-Team. Whitney is the author of the bestselling book Disrupt Yourself: Putting the Power of Innovation to Work, and is the founder of the accompanying Disrupt Yourself podcast. Whitney is also a noted speaker, and executive and innovation coach, and is a regular contributor to the Harvard Business Review.
What was covered
In this episode, we are joined by Robert Hagstrom, who is an author, investment strategist, and portfolio manager. His books include The New York Times bestselling The Warren Buffett Way and The NASCAR Way: The Business That Drives the Sport and the recently republished Investing: The Last Liberal Art, in which he investigates investment concepts that lie out with traditional economics.
What Was Covered
In this episode, author and journalist Warren Berger joins us to discuss his book, A More Beautiful Question: The Power of Inquiry in Sparking Breakthrough Ideas, which examines the ways in which deep questioning fuels innovation. Warren has contributed articles and stories to The New York Times, GQ, New York magazine, and The Los Angeles Times, and was previously magazine editor for CBS and contributing editor for Wired.
In this episode, we are joined by David Marquet, who was the Captain of the USS Santa Fe from 1990 to 2001 and now works as a leadership expert with businesses worldwide. We cover his book, Turn The Ship Around! A True Story of Building Leaders by Breaking Rules, which has been recently re-released with a new companion workbook.
In this episode we are joined by Piyush Chowhan who is the Vice President and Chief Innovation Officer for Arvind Lifestyle Brands, which operates more than a thousand apparel retail stores across India. Piyush has extensive experience in retail strategy, business analytics, customer loyalty and CRM, retail business consulting and supply chain management.