Thought Leadership from Industry Peers

The Importance of Creative Leadership for successful Technology Innovation

John Monks | 07 December 2017

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Digital Leadership in today’s digital economy has become a necessity. Digital leaders develop strategies to drive and transform their digital business and to manage their team and people in today’s digital economy. Digital Leaders also drive business value through innovation and experimentation.

Today’s digital economy demands courage and creativity from its leaders. Thinking differently is essential. Our design thinking follows a pattern. We tend to follow structured thinking even when we are using our imagination. How do we disrupt our thinking to be more imaginative and be unconstrained?

Creative Leadership and Visioning

A creative leader or visionary can challenge norms by letting go of inhibitions or ingrained habits. These habits can be organizational but typically reside within the individual: fears of disappointment, of desertion, of separation. Fears might be real, but it is critical to name one’s fears and turn these fears into creative thinking challenges instead of inhibitions. It often takes a mindful effort, one that might feel uncomfortable, to have breakthrough thinking.

Creative leaders provide a clear and compelling vision for their organisation. A Vision of success is a clear and concise portrayal of what the organization looks like after it successfully implements its plans and attains its full potential. Thinking outside of these natural patterns paves the way for a new concept on how innovation can be approached.

Co-Creating with Customers

Creative Leaders not only need to be ambassadors for Innovation inside their own organizations but work with their customers and suppliers to proactively co-create new products and services. This can create opportunities for new ways to interact with your customers and might hold the key to an entirely new business model.

Creative Leaders to navigate the complex and uncertain world

We live in a rapidly changing world. Digital transformation, connectivity and information sharing are generating huge shifts in society such as the shared economy, the internet of things and big data, enabling new modes of value-generation. The omnipresence of technology will make changes volatile. It takes resilience to maintain a tenacious attitude in these situations and to choose actions without knowing in advance if they will work. It requires a certain blend of skills and mindsets to lead them without having a rulebook to follow.

Creative Leadership is the key to coming up with simple, effective and innovative solutions. Innovation rarely comes with unlimited budgets, unlimited choice and permanent blue skies. Powerful solutions can also rise out of confines, pressures and struggles. This is where Frugal Technology innovation supports the creative leader to convert their vision to reality with limited resources. “Frugal Technology Innovation” is defined as the art of overcoming harsh constraints and innovating sustainable products within the limited resources.

Threat of creative destruction

In this digital era, companies like Booking.com and Airbnb manage to revolutionize the hotel industry and leave incumbents behind within the time span of only years. These companies have successfully adopted the concept of Frugal Innovation. The point here is not that new companies arise. The point is that companies stuck in the belief of business, as usual, may wake up one morning completely out of business. They need to wake up now, to look at the world differently, to think and act differently.

The challenge is that most corporate leaders are trained in direct thinking, in devising plans that will grow their business through increased efficiency. They are not trained to come up with radical ideas that reshape their industries, ideas that might overhaul their own product portfolio and build complete new businesses.

These businesses need a transformation of thought process, creative leadership or visioning that can make an enterprise act like the startups that would else overtake them and encourage this startup type culture even in a large company structure.

Check out the video on Creative Leadership here: 

Next Steps

As the next step for creative leadership, enterprises need rapid prototyping and scalable solutions. The IT leaders of today therefore also need an IT partner who will imbibe these qualities and work alongside them to deliver frugal yet innovative technology solutions. A partner who will build quality solutions through Rapid Prototyping and will also help deliver Scalable Solutions. Ignitho is a market leader for UK enterprises in this area today.

In the upcoming blogs, we look at how prototyping and scalable solutions can help creative or digital leadership.

John Monks Innovation Consultant | IT Leadership Roles - NYPD & HP

John built a career in management consulting, establishing DigitasLBI's global Digital Business Design practice and Curve in London and New York, transforming many of the world's leading organisations. John is an expert facilitator, certified team coach and engaging speaker. A participant in the groundbreaking global creative leadership course, THNK, John's joining forces to catalyze breakthrough solutions to the world’s societal challenges. Read More

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