Innovation Tip: Sign on the Dotted Line

Innovation efforts that aren’t supported from the top are often doomed to fail—senior managers must commit to support innovation efforts in order for those efforts to really take off. Ask your team to collaborate on drafting a “Leadership Contract”—a brief summary of what leadership will commit to doing in order to drive innovation forward. Have each member of your team come to the table with two or three specific actions or behaviors they’d like leadership to commit to.

Once you’ve met with your team and agreed on your commitments, assemble a one-page document that you can present to senior leadership. Have them sign the document as a show of their commitment to innovation.

This exercise accomplishes three main goals:

  1. It forces teams to clearly articulate what and how they expect senior leaders to commit to innovation.
  2. It forces leadership to make a visible, tangible commitment.
  3. And the final document serves to remind leaders how important their support is.

Looking for more ways to inspire others and become a role model for innovation? Check out our Advanced Guide: How to Be an Effective Innovation Leader.


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