Promote innovation in a team environment. BSBINN301A. Learning outcomes. 1 Create opportunities to maximise innovation within the team 1.1 Evaluate and reflect on what the team needs and wants to achieve
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People won’t be willing to let go until many questions in the first four levels (awareness, information, personal and management) have been answered. The more fully they are answered, the more quickly they can move through the transition phase and into the new beginning phase.
Without satisfactory answers, people will either not let go at all, or flounder in the transition phase for a long time.
Once new beginnings start, people move into the top three levels of Hall’s hierarchy (consequences, collaboration, and refocussing).
1. Draw on your own experience to give an example of an improvement and an innovative idea within an organisation
2 Argue a case for change being good, even when nothing real is achieved, because it keeps employees from becoming stale.
Innovation, work groups and teams
‘And it ought to be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain of success than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things. Because the innovator has for enemies all those who have done well under the old conditions, and lukewarm defenders in those who may do well under the new. This coolness arises partly from fear of the opponents, who have the laws on their side, and partly from the incredulity of men, who do not readily believe in new things until they have had a long experience of them.’
1. Distinguish between innovation and improvement.
2 Consider whether it is easier for small businesses to be innovative than large organisations.
3 How would you innovate if assigned the task of giving one of our commercial television networks a competitive edge?
Read VIGNETTE: It’ll be great?
(in the light of this article consider Hall’s hierarchy )
What are the key points of this story?
From Hall’s hierarchy, we can expect that Linda’s employees will be worried first about the effect of the changes on themselves individually and as a team. Since both the impact of the proposed change on the culture and the degree of change are high, we can expect some serious resistance from all employees (managers and individual contributors alike).
People who adopt the change and are positive about it need to be highly visible and visibly rewarded. The Plan – Do – Check – Act cycle should be followed and action plans made to Act to cement the changes in place.
Continuous feedback from every level and group is important followed quickly by acting on the results.
She should consider holding weekly or bi-weekly meetings to share any information she has, and meet regularly with her own manager to find out as much as she can about the changes. She will need to carefully avoid taking an authoritarian direction and to provide as much clear information as she can.
Linda will need to surface, honour, and answer all the resistance points and concerns of her team. She should be open with them and if she doesn’t know the answer to any of their questions or concerns, she should say so and try to find out.
She should use Hall’s hierarchy to provide information to employees as and when they will be ready for it, recognising that some individuals in her team may move through the hierarchy more quickly than others.
She will need to deal carefully with anyone who is having particular difficulties accepting the change and try to bring them along.
They will need to be confident they will be able to learn new competencies and use their existing ones differently. They will need to learn how to work together to arrive at a consensus on how the work of their department will be done. As a team, they will need to learn to function together as an integrated whole.
Chan will need to set clear goals, establish effective team processes of participating the redesign discussions, and answer their questions and concerns patiently. He will need to understand that some or even all of the team may resist the changes initially and honestly and fully explain how the changes are likely to affect them.
...may revolve around ‘I’ll lose my place in the pecking order’; ‘I’m good at what I do – what if I can’t learn the new tasks?’ ‘I may not like the new jobs I’m supposed to do’; ‘I’m too old to learn “new tricks”!’ ‘This is bound to open up a hornet’s nest and start us all bickering and fighting’; and ‘My opinions won’t count and I’ll be forced to do things I don’t want to do.’ Chan will need to surface their resistance, honour it, and provide full and clear explanations.
...is expected of his team clearly and how their effectiveness as a team and as individual contributors will be measured. He should explain the overall goals of the job redesign and how the process will operate. He should outline how each of his team members and the team as a whole are involved and how they are likely to be affected. He should outline the expected benefits of the redesign for individuals and the team and for their customers (whether internal or external) and be honest about any downsides.
...clear guidelines and time frames for the team to work within to design and implement the change. He should learn, if he doesn’t already know, the skills for leading participative meetings and managing conflict. He should brush up on quality tools and techniques for identifying and solving problems so that the new working systems and work flow they design and introduce will have the desired effects. This will help Chan and his team to achieve consensus, build a strong, high performing team, and achieve the results management is looking for.
She also needs to surface, listen to, and honour and address people’s concerns. This will take patience and a willingness and the ability to bring people along with her, slowly.
She will need to have the information on hand to feed it to people according to the readiness of the individuals and the team as a whole. She will also need to keep communicating, communicating, communicating.
...invite her team to participate in designing the specific changes. They are familiar with the work, will be affected by the changes, and will be carrying them out.
...to resist and dealing with him as a road-blocker fails (Box 1.29), she will probably have to resort to the North Bound Bus analogy. ‘The bus is going North, Bruce. If you want to come with us, welcome aboard;’ we’ll give you all the support we can. If you don’t want to go North, now is the time to hop off. I’ll support you in whatever decision you make.’