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Innovation Insight with Gary Cohen and Heather Marasse

November 17, 2014 1:37 PM | Theresa Boyce (Administrator)

 On Tuesday, November 11, CEO Trust's NYC Chapter was fortunate to share in the insights, experience, creativity, and wisdom of Gary Cohen, most recently global CEO of Timex and a consumer products veteran, and Heather Marasse, Managing Partner of Generative Leadership Group (GLG), a leading innovation consulting firm.  Gary and Heather have partnered at Gillette, Playtex, and Timex to help launch dozens of successful innovation programs. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Consider the intersection of human systems with the business systems we routinely manage. The challenges with innovation are culturally based, and rest often in being too dependent on what we know.
  • Get past the need to be knowledgeable. Judging and evaluation too early in the process, and intolerance of mistakes, are pitfalls to taking an innovative and creative approach to business problem solving.
  • Think about how to establish a vision for the future to remove barriers. The vision can be at the team level inside the business. Possibility versus certainty is the key to developing a vision that will result in immediate action. Only an hour or so is needed to develop a compelling and actionable vision for the future.
  • Create a climate for generous listening and true communication. Since large companies have a gravitational pull to the past, this can be challenging.
  • Embrace conversations that produce results through possibility, relationship, opportunity, action, and completion. Remember, conversation has a design.
  • Celebrate early and often. It is the acknowledgement and communication of small but important wins that will ensure a cycle of innovation and success.
  • Ask - what can we try first? Some things cannot be known until you try them.
  • Declare your future! This is the key to innovation.

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