Innovation in Leadership (


Leadership is a demanding responsibility regardless of where you work as a leader.   In VUCA landscape changes are rapid, and no leader wants to be caught unawares. A good leader should be open-minded, embrace innovation and be innovative himself. Countless management tools support an effective manager to deliver expectations but innovation is in the forefront on the quest to achieving company success.
Innovation goes hand in hand with the existing company strategies, also how welcoming a leadership is to change and progress. Forward-looking strategies should be in place for creativity and innovation to thrive. It’s the responsibility of a leader to ensure this is realized. An organization, through its leadership, should create and maintain a conducive work environment that tolerates and manages employee diversity. If this is achieved, not only does it make it easy to achieve organizational creativity, but it also helps sustain innovation for the greater good of the company.

The Role of Leadership in Innovation
Achieving success in an organization is not a hunch. A leader is expected to take control and positively influence the culture and structure of the organization, and transform them into acceptable results that promise a competitive edge.
Leaders implement strategies to meet accomplishments expected by the organization. For strategies to be successfully implemented, technology and an active culture are necessary. However, their benefit can only be apparent if the leaders stay positive and keep an open mind to creativity and innovation. A dynamic and proactive leader that implements strategies targeted for innovation purposes motivates employees to help achieve success in the organization.
On the other hand, the effect of ineffective leadership stalls organizational progress. Stalled progress affects the overall well-being and harmony in an organization. In the end, the organization chart is weakened and achievement of strategies is stifled. Restructuring and or downsizing are often the aftermath of ineffective leadership. So regardless of how feasible strategies and strong organizational structures are, without an effective and creative leader, even all existing management tools do not guarantee success.

How to Create an Innovative Leader
An effective leader needs innovation in leadership. If an organization does not have an innovative leader, they should train either the existing one or hire. Every leader has a potential to be creative; it’s a skill that can be developed and practiced over time. There are also courses, workshops, and programs in Innovation and Leadership that a leader can undertake to learn how to use innovation to lead effectively, work collaboratively, and drive results. Hiring a leader can be a positive thing if done properly. Further diversity can be achieved by just bringing in a new leader with an entirely different vision to existing one.

Good leadership determines an organizational success. Therefore, innovation in leadership itself, or lack of it, is the determining factor. Organizational strategies themselves must first embrace and consider innovation as a powerful tool in its quest for achieving its goals and objectives. This enables and guides the leader to warm up to the expectations of the organization by practicing and demonstrating his ability, as a creative and innovative leader.

This article was originally featured in the fifth edition of , A Leadership Newspaper by Dr. Deepak Malhotra