Collective Genius: The Art and Practice of Leading Innovation
Great leaders of innovation don’t fit the conventional mold of “good” leadership. They’re not visionaries who set direction and inspire others to follow. Instead, they create the context in which others are both willing and able to innovate. As one leader said, “My job is to set the stage, not to perform on it.” You might think the key to innovation is attracting exceptional creative talent. Or making the right investments. Or breaking down organizational silos. All of these things may help – but there’s only one way to ensure sustained innovation: you need to lead it. They found among leaders a widely shared, and mistaken, assumption: that a “good” leader in all other respects would also be an effective leader of innovation. The truth is, leading innovation takes a distinctive kind of leadership, one that unleashes and harnesses the “collective genius” of the people in the organization. Collective Genius will not only inspire you; it will give you the concrete, practical guidance you need to build innovation into the fabric of your business.
Linda A. Hill is the Wallace Brett Donham Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. She is the faculty chair of the Leadership Initiative and has chaired numerous HBS Executive Education programs, including the Young Presidents’ Organization Presidents’ Seminar and the High Potentials Leadership Program. Hill’s consulting and executive education activities have been in the areas of leadership development, talent management, leading change and innovation, implementing global strategies, and managing cross-organizational relationships. She has worked with organizations worldwide, including General Electric, Reed Elsevier, Accenture, Pfizer, IBM, MasterCard, Mitsubishi, Morgan Stanley, the National Bank of Kuwait, AREVA, and the Economist. Hill is the coauthor, with Kent Lineback, of Being the Boss: The 3 Imperatives for Becoming a Great Leader, which the Wall Street Journal named one of “Five Best Business Books to Read for Your Career in 2011.” Hill is also the author course modules, award-winning multimedia management development programs, and numerous HBR articles. In 2013 she was named by Thinkers50 as one of the top ten management thinkers in the world. Hill is currently a member of the boards of State Street Corporation, Eaton Corporation, and Harvard Business Publishing. She is a trustee of The Bridgespan Group and the Art Center College of Design, an advisor for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund USA, and a special representative to the Board of Trustees of Bryn Mawr College. She is also on the advisory board of the Aspen Institute Business and Society Program. Hill holds a PhD in behavioral sciences and an MA in educational psychology, both from the University of Chicago. She received a BA summa cum laude in psychology from Bryn Mawr College.
- Linda Hill