Developing Clear Communication Styles & Leadership Buy-In Improves Innovation

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Describe your business on a high level and some of the focus you provide your clients.

My business is a leadership development consultancy focused on helping teams collaborate to innovate using a variety of methods and frameworks.

What do you feel is a common roadblock to “INNOVATIVE THINKING” or “COLLABORATION” in the organizations you work with. This answer might pertain to other aspects of your organization, simplexity creative thinking or both.

Team members inadvertently have communication styles that signal threat rather than openness to partnering. Sometimes their communications have both elements of trust and distrust in the same conversation. Often they simply lack an awareness of what types of processes foster problem-solving together or inhibit it. Too often differences in style or perception result in polarization and needs to be seen as “right” when synergizing differences could lead to more effective outcomes. When leaders lack the mental models to help with innovative thinking there is confusion about a path forward and the same issues get discussed over and over again without reaching resolution toward an outcome.

How long have you been integrating Simplexity into your organization?

We have incorporated simplexity into our practice for over 10 years.

How important do you feel it is in your environment for people to understand how they think innovatively? 

Everyone can make their best contributions when they are confident in their own strengths and those of others. Poorly constructed brainstorming sessions can actually suppress the willingness to offer new or countercultural ideas.

Do you utilize the Basadur Profile with your clients?

Yes.

If Yes, how do you utilize the Profile?

I use the profile in executive selection engagements when there is a need to balance the innovation styles and capabilities at the top of the organization. I use it with employees at other levels to help construct teams problem-solving teams and even relate to each other one on one. I have also given it to coaches and consultants to understand how they typically intervene and what the implications are for what they offer their clients.

How Important do you feel is it for people to understand their thinking styles and thinking styles of others on their team.

Very Important.

How Do you utilize Simplexity In your business? 

 I use it to help teams problem-solve important issues together. As byproducts of the process, people come to trust each other and the importance of everyone’s contributions to a company’s success. In one instance we have trained a cohort of employees to bring together different groups to solve problems throughout the company.

What outcomes or what resonates most about simplexity with your clients? 

The profile resonates because it explains certain interactions they have with one another and some of the unintentional roadblocks these differences have been creating. The Simplexity process helps team members open up to the value of the differing perspectives and assumptions that can be as valid as their own and bring much greater clarity to the issues before them. They come to appreciate the importance of disciplined divergence/idea generation before evaluation. They also like the way the process begins to reveal hidden influences on their challenges that were simply not surfaced and therefore could not be resolved. They like coming out with new perspectives and concrete actions to take together.

Upon completion of a Facilitation or otherwise, what skills do you feel stick most with the individuals. e.g How Might We? Diverging / Converging ? Others

Diverging before converging is an important realization. The value of a good process in which everyone has voice tends to open up future conversations and the value of not operating only one one’s own perspective. Though it seems simple, really getting people to think in “How Might We” terms takes practice and ongoing reinforcement.

Can you provide an example of an OUTCOME (without naming the businesses) where tangible results occurred?

An executive team started out with the senior leader’s definition of a problem to be solved. After a Simplexity session, the roots of the more important problems came to light and the actions taken were viewed as much more strategically valuable. In another instance a product development team was not producing timely results and there was distrust among the senior leaders. After the first Simplexity session many inefficiencies were jointly removed from the process and decisions were made on a more timely basis. A year later the issues presented were much more strategic and engaged the highest level leadership in the company. After that there was a clear feeling that they had developed a culture of collaboration and trust as the new norm. Independently, leaders were using tools to extend the collaboration to other functions in the company.

see all simplexity in action here

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