Leading Innovation: Reflecting On Failure For Creative Agility (week 18)

Dog in deep thought

When experiments, tests, or pilot project fail, reflect on why they fail, not who failed. For Creative Agility to help with innovation, it requires a no-penalty culture.

Week 18: Reflecting On Failure For Creative Agility

Traditional leadership:

The convention has been to blame others for poor results rather than to focus on learning from experiments, tests, or pilots.

A fresh approach:

New-era leaders should not blame people for failed results when innovating. Instead, they should rigorously seek to understand why the effort failed.

Bring it to life:

      • Regularly conduct a post-mortem with teams when an experiment is not successful.
      • Ensure everyone has access to the same data.
      • Reflection should be done consciously, collaboratively, and openly.
      • Take time for self-reflection and encourage employees to do the same.
      • Create a no-penalty culture, where people are free to change their minds or be on the wrong side of an issue.
      • Encourage teams to use learning to inform next steps.

Next week: Creative Agility – Adjust.