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Your Challenge Enabling Innovation

Enabling innovation

Innovation is vital to your firm’s future. It plays an important role in sustaining growth and ensuring your organisation stays up-to-date.

But to many people, innovation can feel very intangible. What does it really mean?! Countless surveys reveal a gap between a firm’s desire to innovate and its ability to make it happen.

Innovation may seem overwhelming. It’s a process, not an event. It’s more than new product or service development. Many different people and functions need to be involved. We’re here to help.

Working with your teams, we take a strategy-led approach to innovation that puts your business first. We are experienced in design thinking, business model innovation, lean startup and other innovative approaches. Our research enables you to spot trends and anticipate what’s ahead. We help to build innovation capability and develop innovation programmes. We love to support organisations in taking their ideas and turning them into reality.

Defining strategy and mission

Values, purpose, strategy and ambition are the foundation of any organisation. Together they define what your firm stands for, where it is going, and what it wants to achieve.

These principles and plans are always important, and at times of change they become invaluable. Clear strategy and mission support both growth and turnaround. They are vital in guiding organisational decisions and addressing industry challenges. Staff motivation and culture depend upon strategy and mission. Successful leadership transitions are facilitated by a good values match, plus a clear strategic plan.

We take a holistic and collaborative approach to defining strategy and mission that involves your leadership team, staff and stakeholders. By guiding you through a structured process, we’re able to help you understand your organisation and to knowledgeably shape its future. Our Agile Strategy Planner bridges the gap between strategic intent and detailed implementation. We offer a comprehensive ‘strategy as a service’ solution that supports you in creating an ongoing rhythm of strategy development and delivery.

Your Challenge Enabling Innovation

Your Challenge Enabling Innovation

Driving growth

There is no doubt that growing firms contribute jobs, new markets and innovations. For founders, leaders and employees, a growing venture also brings personal satisfaction.

Growing an organisation can however be somewhat of a rollercoaster ride. The latest research shows that growth is a disruptive process rather than one that can be easily planned and coordinated. Growth can also be destabilising and stressful as well as beneficial.

Perhaps you want to drive growth in your firm but are unsure which is the best path to pursue. Growth means different things for different organisations—it’s possible to grow revenue and profit margins without expanding.

We work with you to first understand your hopes and ambitions, the challenges you face, and the reality of the situation as a whole. We’re experienced in upskilling leadership teams in navigating the growth process and managing increasing complexity. We teach new venture growth at Warwick Business School and understand growth principles. We enjoy helping you to find new opportunities, challenging you to explore avenues you might not have considered, and can support you in developing a strategy for growth.

Developing leadership

In addition to motivating people, leaders are responsible for guiding business decisions, designing organisational structures and strategies, and supporting organisational learning. Good leadership is comprised of both competence (depth of understanding and knowledge of the work to be done) and leadership qualities (such as emotional intelligence, persuasiveness, curiosity and courageousness).

Leadership at all levels—from executive leaders to department and function heads, team leaders, project leaders, individual contributors and other influencers—has a direct impact on performance. For most firms, strategy and management capability are the biggest barriers to growth. The skill to balance innovation with business as usual (a quality known as ‘organisational ambidexterity’) is also key.

Whether you’re looking to develop the skills of a new leadership team, plan for succession, define and understand your own role as a leader, or build a cross-functional team for a new initiative, we’re here to help. We have a track record in supporting leadership teams and boards in firms of all sizes and many different sectors. We are experienced in training, facilitation, mentoring and team workshops. We have worked closely with leaders to help them prioritise their focus and better define their own roles, as well as those of their team. We’re experienced in working with family businesses and owner-managed firms, and bring a personal approach.

Your Challenge Enabling Innovation

Your Challenge Enabling Innovation

Becoming entrepreneurial

Entrepreneurship tends to be associated with individual entrepreneurs or startup ventures; in reality, the basic principles of the entrepreneurial mindset can be applied in many settings involving high uncertainty, including the pursuit of new business opportunities, development of new ventures and creative problem solving.

Research shows that entrepreneurs have a distinctive way of thinking and reasoning that allows them to identify and capitalise upon opportunities to create new value and to deal with conditions of uncertainty. Adopting these principles enables you to become entrepreneurial—even if you or your organisation feel out of your depth, out of practice, too corporate, unskilled or afraid of the risks!

Approaches such as lean startup, business model innovation, discovery driven planning and design sprints all help you to imagine the world differently and to manage risk intelligently. We are experienced in guiding individuals, teams and organisations to become more entrepreneurial. We support intrapreneurship in established companies. We help form and facilitate interdisciplinary teams. We teach and assess for Masters programmes in entrepreneurship at Warwick Business School and Warwick Manufacturing Group. We empower you to create new possibilities, solve big problems, minimise risk, manage failure and invest resource wisely, rather than spending big for little return.

Cross-functional teamwork

Teamwork across functions, disciplines and departments is vital to innovation, leadership, strategy, entrepreneurialism and growth. It brings together those people who together have the skills and expertise necessary to deliver your objectives.

In contrast to inefficient siloes, cross-functional teamwork encourages shared responsibility, clear communication, effective knowledge sharing and a collaborative, action-oriented approach. In our experience, this fast-tracks results. Unfinished projects that have taken months or years, suddenly deliver; issues that have been rumbling on come to a head and solutions are found. Effective teamwork can reduce time to market, minimise strategic risks and speed up your decision making.

From board level to grass roots projects, we’re experienced in working with interdisciplinary teams. Our approach draws on best practice facilitation techniques, agile methodologies and design thinking. We create equality between team members, no matter the level of experience, seniority or specialism. We speak science and tech, as well as customer, manager, supplier, operations, marketing, production, sales and R&D, so we’re good at translating! We encourage honesty and productive conflict. We upskill your team.

Meeting today’s challenges increasingly requires systems thinking and cross-boundary collaboration. We’re on hand to help you develop a new way of thinking, working and being.

Your Challenge Enabling Innovation

In partnership with your teams

Leadership Teams

As a senior leader, you know that to get the best results for the business, you need to get the best out of your management team.

Your team’s innovative ideas, their buy in and their engagement are vital. You want them to grow in confidence and work together as effective leaders.

We provide expert facilitation that not only allows you and your management team to develop vision, new opportunities and strategies in equal partnership, but that also provides additional support, expertise and insight. Our involvement allows leaders to take a step back, enabling you to reflect and co-create with your team.

Project Teams

All organisations rely on project teams to deliver innovative and strategic outcomes. Coming in all shapes and sizes, no two teams are alike.

As a manager you want your team to deliver on the challenging objectives set for them, often alongside their existing roles and day jobs.

We work alongside project sponsors and multidisciplinary teams to help ensure a successful outcome. With a focus on agile partnership, ideation and co-creation, we never take over from your team, but rather support them by providing structure, subject matter expertise, research insights and facilitation support.

Department Teams

Ensuring your department is aligned with the organisational strategy and able to deliver on new initiatives is key to delivering great results.

For your team however, the process of transforming the big picture into a practical department approach can be a real challenge.

We work with managers and their teams to explore and innovate the value their department contributes to the whole. By taking a collaborative and open approach, we enable you to surface and resolve issues, encourage team collaboration and create a real sense of ownership and excitement.

Your organisation. Your unique solution.

Your situation and team is unique, with a very specific set of challenges. You don’t want a cookie cutter approach. We know that what works in one situation won’t necessarily work in another. That’s why we take our time to understand your needs, we don’t make assumptions and we create a blended solution to fit your specific objectives. Find out more below.

Whether you have a live project you want to chat about, or just want some advice, we’re here to help. Give us a call, drop us an email or meet us for coffee—this one’s on us!

You probably want to know a bit more about us. We’re good at what we do and friendly to boot! Meet Matt, Debbie…and our Chief Distraction Officer, Jess the Office Dog.

From interesting articles to downloadable resources like our Agile Strategy Planner,  we’ve got a plethora of things to help you think differently and to reframe your challenge.