Several years ago I was looking for a way to approach a sensitive leadership issue with a client: openness to new ideas, or in this case a severe lack of.
Over the years this company had developed a “Not Invented Here” syndrome and as a result were lagging in adopting new technologies and new business models. Needless to say results were lagging their peer group as well. The CEO and senior team had a plethora of reasons (= excuses) why innovation was lacking inside their company. However it was pretty obvious to everyone (except the senior team) that upper management was not very open to new ideas (“we tried that in ’94 and it didn’t work then”; “we don’t need new products we just need to get people to execute better”, etc.). I wanted an interactive way to kick off a very pointed discussion about their negative leadership culture so I had this cartoon commissioned by a UK artist.
At a senior team offsite workshop, following the usual welcome and opening remarks by the CEO, I turned on the projector and put this cartoon up on the screen as large as possible, then left the workshop room. I came back 20 minutes later. What type of discussion do you think the senior team engaged in? How would your senior team react?
They got the point!
Tight Lines . . .