Following their previous highly successful TechNet event, SIOPA were pleased to welcome their first international speaker, Canadian business executive, Jeff Melanson to Flux.

As an industry leader with 20 years’ experience in change management, Jeff opened his process-centric presentation by addressing Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences that focuses on the many varied ways humans make sense of the world or express intelligence. Jeff engaged the audience with how the collision of his extensive knowledge and experience in the worlds of music and the arts provoke innovation, strategy and creativity in business.

This intriguing opening lead to a discussion on organisational structures needing to change to meet the new reality of creativity as a core component of value and continuous improvement as the mechanism to sustain it (HBR, 2013). Jeff commented that the ‘new’ organisation will include structures that will need to support innovation and at  increasing scale. Melanson proposed that our sense of what is realistic or not might actually limit our own possibility and that human potential with a ‘growth mindset’ free from ‘functional fixedness’ alongside a permission to fail, is what will ‘solve problems we don’t even know are problems yet’ (Fisch, 2008).

Throughout his presentation, Jeff addressed theories from authors such as Malcolm Gladwell, Rosamund and Benjamin Zander, Carol Dweck and spoke candidly about Tom Kelly’s Ten Faces of Innovation addressing driving creativity throughout organisations.

Jeff walked the audience through several strategies to achieving disruptive innovation, including the understanding of radical evolution, the gravity of values, how a ‘listening tour’ can change your workplace and the importance of casting a light on disruptive forces in our blind spots. Most importantly Jeff stressed the importance of patience and uncompromised ambition that is driven less by fear and anxiety but by growth and opportunity. Finally, Jeff closed with expressing the relevance of deciphering “when you’re doing well, understanding why you’re doing well”.

The audience found Jeff to be “really engaging” and it was an “interesting topic”. Many guests were grateful for the industry examples covered in the presentation where guests could technically apply various process theories into their workplaces. Quantitative feedback gathered from the audience rated this event four out of five stars.

SIOPA would like to extend a warm thank you Vanessa VershawReinvention Consulting for coordinating Jeff’s attendance at this CPD event. Thank you Vanessa!

We look forward to inviting industry professionals to their final CPD event for the year on 24th October where SIOPA board member Jon Wilson will be hosting a panel of senior industry leaders discussing organisational topics such as maintaining engagement and employee wellness in economic downturns. Registration for the event will be available soon – watch this space!