Note from Lynda: by now, you will have seen a few issues of the Hot Spots Newsletter, and will hopefully be benefiting from some of the exclusive insights and analysis from the team. We want to continue to bring you great content that you won’t be able to read anywhere else, and which will inspire and enthuse you to help your organisation flourish and become more innovative and energised..
A vital part of building the community is to learn from what we are all doing through case studies and real-life stories – both times when you have been really excited by what’s happened and times when you feel frustrated with progress. So please do share your stories and insights: just drop us a note with your insights, experiences, ideas and questions. That way the Hot Spots Newsletter becomes an important part of the community we are building across the world.
The Hot Spots Research Institute launches its 2009/10 Research Consortium
Last month you may recall we mentioned that we were about to launch our latest Research Consortium, so we are now delighted to announce the Consortium has been launched. Titled ‘The Future of Work and the Adoption of Innovative Organisational Practices’ we will formally kick off on October 1, with a fast-cycle time that will run for six months.
We believe this is a crucial time to be looking forward – even when the temptation is to focus exclusively on the present. We will really consider what the workplace of the future will look like and what it will mean to the leaders we develop, the way we create HR practices, the structure of the company and the culture and competencies. We believe it will prove to be one of the most provocative conversations about the future with companies across the world engaging with our state-of-the-art technologies to pull together ideas. We already have some great companies, public sector institutions and not-for-profit organisations signed up.
This will be the third time Lynda has directed a major Research Consortium, and the results of the first on HR strategies were incorporated into her books, Living Strategy and The Democratic Enterprise, while the second – on cooperation - became the basis of Hot Spots and Glow. And, with near-seismic changes taking place in the business environment, this promises to be Lynda’s most significant Research Consortium yet.
What changes in our environment have brought about the need for a radically evolved workplace? Click here for details.
How can you get involved in this groundbreaking project?
This research is supported by the Singapore Government’s Ministry of Manpower and will include companies from across the world. Since we launched the consortium, some great companies from across the world have signed up. These include :the UK’s National Health Service; the Japanese electronics multinational Fujitsu; the telecom company Colt; the financial institute Avusa, which is headquartered in South Africa; the retailer Marks & Spencer; the US multinational software company CSC; and Save the Children. Over the next month we will continue to build the membership of the consortium to create a dynamic and creative network.
If you’d like to read more about what is required and the benefits of becoming a member of this exciting research consortium, click here.
And, if you are interested in joining, please email Tina on email@example.com
Real-life Hot Spots examples: innovation at GE by jumping across boundaries
GE Healthcare created innovation by jumping across boundaries to involve undergraduate students of the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, one of the foremost design schools in the world. While the Healthcare division is a market-leader in X-ray machines, ultrasound equipment and CAT scans, the team understood that there was a need to focus more on the human side of its equipment to retain its edge – and this was particularly applicable to emerging markets in regions such as rural Africa.
Three teams from the Art Center (each with eight students from a range of disciplines including design, transport and the environment) took on the challenge of expanding healthcare into rural Africa by 2016.
The resulting prototypes included:
- A non-invasive malaria scanner to detect the disease through the skin of a hand, without the need for needles and blood tests.
- Personalised mosquito netting with coloured insect repellent to instil a feeling of ownership, and to promote use.
- An ultrasound device to wrap around the mother’s belly, to lessen the need for skilled technicians to operate existing problems.
- A radio bracelet to be worn by expectant mothers to alert midwifes in case of distress.
Hot Spots around the globe
Lynda is just back from trip to America where she was speaking to two groups of CEOs and CIOs one on the West Coast and one on the East Coast and had the following comments on how the country feels, under a new President and about a year into the economic crisis. Here are her thoughts:
“While it’s harder to judge general sentiment in America, as the schools are in recess and everyone’s looking forward to taking their holiday, I had some really interesting conversations over the two weeks I was in California and the Carolinas. As you’d expect, people have mixed emotions about when the economy will brighten, but it is clear that the optimism from election day is still present.
“What struck me was a real shift in thinking, from the testosterone-fuelled management to one that is much more interested in collaboration. At both sessions, CEOs and CIOs were interested in how they could build stronger and more cooperative teams. There was also a realisation that post-recession companies would have to change – the effects of globalisation can only increase, and value will increasingly come from partnerships outside of the company. Many looked at the applications on the iPhone as an important indicator of how a creative community of people can really make a difference to a value proposition.
“I am looking forward to returning in a few months to see if the inclination to reach out and the mood of cautious optimism continue!”
Developing networks: who’s in our network?
At the heart of Hot Spots is the capacity to create valuable and exciting networks. Over the next few issues of the newsletter, we will be introducing you to some members of the Hot Spots’ network who have been important sounding boards. This month, we’re introducing someone who many of you are already familiar with - Dave Ulrich.
Dave’s latest work is around what he has termed the Talent Menu: the 12 key insights on the latest theory, research and practice on talent. He says: “Talent has become a key factor in an organisation’s response to challenges and change, and to its success rate. Talent is evolving into a science for HR professionals and a passion for many line managers. But even after stipulating that talent matters, many companies are lost in the myriad of promises, programmes and processes and lose sight of this basic tenet.”
You can read more of his work here.
Watch out for next month’s newsletter, where we will bring you some exclusive insights from a two-day conference in Johannesburg, where Lynda and Dave will be speaking together.
Next month: Tamara Erickson.
Have your say
Here at the Hot Spots Movement, we’re looking forward to a slightly quieter spell for the next month, with quick holidays here and there. So we’ve turned to the bookshelves to pick out some business books that we have been trying to read for a couple of months now!
Top of our list is Jim Collins’ latest book, How the Mighty Fall: and Why Some Companies Never Give In. What business books have you read recently that were both thought-provoking and entertaining? Let us know on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Incidentally, FT columnist Stefan Stern named Glow one of his selections for holiday reading. He said: “A rare foray into the personal development section of the business bookshelves, Lynda Gratton's vibrant text challenges readers to get out from under the tedium of the daily grind and look to form creative relationships at work instead. Her research confirms that good things happen to positive people.”
You can read the full list of hot holiday reading in the FT here.