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Contextual Factors that Affect Outcomes of Citizen Engagement

Friday, July 3, 2015

by Nick Charney RSS / cpsrenewalFacebook / cpsrenewalLinkedIn / Nick Charneytwitter / nickcharneygovloop / nickcharneyGoogle+ / nickcharney

Earlier this week I was doing some research on citizen engagement (See: The Problem with Engagement) and came across a  massive 189-page PDF entitled Strategic framework for mainstreaming citizen engagement in World Bank Group operations: engaging with citizens for improved results. If you can spare the time I highly recommend reading what you can of it, it covers off important citizen engagement factors such as country context, government ownership, and the importance of clarity of objectives.

If you can't dedicate the time to read the whole document you ought to at least look over the three tables below that I pulled directly there from. They cover off (1) the contextual factors that affect outcomes of citizen engagement; (2) additional contextual factors that affect outcomes of citizen engagement in various areas (e.g. service delivery); and (3) overview of citizen engagement approaches and mechanisms.

I've also got the tables saved in a separate word document that you can grab if you are so interested.

Cheers


Contextual Factors that Affect Outcomes of Citizen Engagement Initiatives
Demand-side factors
Willingness
  • The degree to which the development issue addressed by citizen engagement initiatives is of interest to all citizens or an identifiable target group of citizens.
  • Willingness to engage with the state based on factors such as intrinsic motivation, perception of government willingness to engage, belief in the efficacy of participation, or cost(s) of inaction.
  • Nature of past state-citizen engagement and outcomes achieved.
  • History and risk of elite capture.
Capacity
  • Access to timely, credible, comprehensive, relevant, and easy-to-understand information.
  • Sufficient awareness and understanding of the issue to engage with the government effectively.
  • Capabilities (economic, human, social, political, technical) to engage in the “upstream” (policy formulation) as well as “downstream” (implementation) stages of the engagement process.
  • Strong, broad-based, and recognized leadership to engage on the development issue.
  • Authority, credibility, and legitimacy of CSOs.
  • Capacity to network within and across state-society.
  • Capacity of individuals and groups/organizations for collective action, including excluded and marginalized sections of society.
Supply-side factors
Willingness
  • Willingness of state functionaries (elected officials/bureaucratic staff/service providers) to (a) engage with citizens, and (b) respond to citizens’ feedback (as determined by interests, ideology, incentives, and reward(s)/cost(s) of action/inaction).
  • Strength of individual champions within the state.
  • Level of political competition and whether it creates incentives for reforms and accountability.
  • Perception of the capability of mobilizing citizens and other stakeholders.
  • Degree of sanctions triggered by engagement mechanisms (if any).
  • Effective horizontal accountability institutions (e.g., judiciary, legislative, and other oversight authorities) or well-known legal accountability mechanisms that promote the responsiveness of public officials to citizens’ concerns and priorities.
  • Politics of patronage.
Capacity
  • Generation of and access to timely, credible, comprehensive, and useful information on issues that are important to citizens.
  • Mandate, knowledge, plan/strategy to address the issues.
  • Capacity to gather, aggregate, and respond to citizen feedback (e.g., organizational, technical, and political competencies).
Sociopolitical, economic, legal, and other factors
Context and processes
  • History of civic participation, including existence and history of well-known, open, accessible, credible, and institutionalized citizen-state interface platform(s).
  • Existence of interlocutors/mobilizers with strong leadership, adequate capacity, and credibility (with citizens and state actors) to mobilize both citizens and state officials and facilitate citizen-state interaction.
  • Degree of decentralization.

Additional Contextual Factors Affecting Citizen Engagement Outcomes in Various Areas
Outcome area
Factors
Public service delivery
  • Service characteristics, such as availability of information on and complexity of the service provided.
  • Influence of citizen feedback on the outcomes of service provision vis-à-vis such factors as capacity of service providers.
  • Accessibility/quality of services affiliated with ideologies and values (e.g., water, sanitation). Concerns about service provision in such areas can emerge into socially and politically salient issues.
  • Institutional capacity, mandate, and incentives to respond to citizen feedback.
  • Existence/effectiveness of oversight mechanisms to ensure responsiveness to citizen feedback.
  • Cultural and social factors that affect decision-making processes (e.g., gender, wealth, ethnicity, and education).
  • Risks of providing feedback or engaging with service providers (e.g., retribution by the service personnel on whom citizens depend)
  • Limited or no choice of service providers (e.g., in geographically remote areas).
Public financial management
  • Existence of legal frameworks that require or facilitate opportunities for CE in budget processes.
  • Stage of budget process and timing of citizen input: early CE during budget preparation (vs. execution) increases opportunities for impact.
  • Government structure: governments with existing participatory processes are more likely to be open to a broader range of CE approaches.
  • Perceived legitimacy of citizen input: citizen input that is collective/representative may lead to greater government responsiveness in budget processes than individual input.
Governance
  • Organizational culture of public institutions. (e.g., clarity and effectiveness of policies, procedures, and monitoring and control systems).
  • Form of corruption: extortive corruption practices are more likely than collusive corruption practices to motivate citizen action.
  • Cultural values such as gift-giving or nepotism.
  • Mandate and strength of oversight institutions, including legislature, judiciary, supreme audit institutions, and anticorruption agencies.
  • Independence and proactivity of media.
  • Degree of decentralization, effectiveness of local institutions, and extent of central government oversight.
Natural resource management
  • Resource value: high resource value/economic dependence provides fewer incentives for devolution of authority to local communities.
  • Costs/benefits for relevant stakeholders; e.g., agreement on revenue sharing could help to motivate community engagement.
  • Community characteristics, such as high inequality, likelihood of elite capture, limited information flows, or low capacity.
  • Legal framework and reporting requirements on access to and ownership, allocation, and control of natural resources.
  • Central government support for local management of natural resources, and capacity to negotiate favorable concessions and legal agreements.
  • Existence/efficacy of the private sector’s attempts to understand and address the needs of local communities.
Social inclusion and empowerment
  • Community characteristics such as transparency of decision-making rules, identification of the poor, and degree of equality.
  • Community capacity to implement projects and utilize CE mechanisms effectively.
  • Existence of measures to prevent elite capture (such as contested election of local leaders).
  • Social norms and incentives for the inclusion of women and other vulnerable and marginalized groups.
  • Commitment of state actors to decentralization and empowerment of local governments and communities.

Overview of Citizen Engagement Approaches and Mechanisms
CE activity
Mechanisms
Government
participation required
Citizen participation required
Technical complexity and skills required
Time
Cost
Consultation
Public hearings
Medium
Low
Medium
Low
Low
Focus group discussions
Weak
Low
Medium
Medium
Medium
Advisory body/committee
Medium
Low
Medium
Medium
Low
Grievance Redress
Formal GRMs
Weak
Low
Medium
Low
Low
Citizens’ jury
Medium
Medium
Medium
Low
Low
Collecting, recording, and reporting on inputs from citizens
Public hearings
Medium
Low
Medium
Low
Low
Focus group discussions
Weak
Low
Medium
Medium
Medium
Citizen satisfaction surveys
Medium
High
High
High
High
Community scorecard
Medium
Medium
High
High
High
Citizen report card
Strong
High
Medium
High
High
Collaboration in decision-making

Citizen/user membership in decision-making bodies
Medium
Medium
Medium
Medium
Low
Integrity pacts
Strong
Low
Low
Low
Low
Participatory planning
Medium
Medium
High
High
High
Participatory budgeting
Strong
Medium
High
High
High
Citizens’ jury
Medium
Medium
Medium
Low
Low
Citizen-led monitoring and evaluation or oversight
Procurement monitoring
Strong
High
High
Medium
Medium
Public expenditure tracking
Strong
High
Medium
High
High
Community scorecard
Medium
Medium
High
High
High
Social audit
Medium
High
High
High
High
Citizen report card
Strong
High
Medium
High
High
Citizen satisfaction surveys
Medium
High
High
High
High
Empowering citizens with resources and authority over their use
Participatory planning
Medium
Medium
High
High
High
Community management
Strong
High
High
High
Medium
Community contracting
Strong
High
High
High
Medium
Participatory monitoring
Medium
High
High
Medium
Medium
Building citizen capacity for engagement
Budget literacy campaigns
Weak
Medium
Low
Medium
Medium
Public reporting of revenues and expenditures
Medium
Low
Low
Low
Low
Information dissemination/
demystification
Information campaigns
Weak
Low
Low
Medium
Medium
Citizens’ charters
Strong
Low
Low
Low
Low
Citizen service centers
Strong
Low
Low
Medium
Medium
Budget transparency
Strong
Medium
Low
Medium
Medium
Public reporting of revenues
and expenditures
Medium
Low
Low
Low
Low
Budget literacy campaigns
Weak
Medium
Low
Medium
Medium
Independent budget analysis
Weak
High
Low
High
Medium
Citizens’ budget
Strong
Medium
Low
Medium
Medium

Slack

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

by Kent Aitken RSS / cpsrenewalFacebook / cpsrenewalLinkedIn / Kent Aitkentwitter / kentdaitkengovloop / KentAitken



This isn't a thorough exploration of slack's role in organizations, just a few things that were on my mind recently. Would love to hear your thoughts.


But first, an aside


I've been living in Ottawa for seven years, while most of my family lives on the east coast. My mom's side of my family usually has a mid-summer and a Christmas get-together each year, and I haven't made it back east for either in years. It eats at me. It'd be worth my while, but every year I run quickly into the limits of my vacation days and travel budget, especially when it's a given that I'll be going back to PEI to visit my dad, and Newfoundland to visit my farthest-flung brother.


This has been a powerful dynamic in my life for the last half-decade. Every time I book a trip I'm both excited and conflicted, aware that I'm making tradeoffs, aware that some people - that I think very highly of - will go unvisited in a given year.


Collaboration and relationship-building (or, policy and communications, and never the twain shall meet)


To segue somewhat: last week a speaker was asking where the communications people were at a public administration conference. Some people pointed to general tension or misunderstanding between the two worlds, and I threw in a more functional reason, analogous to the above story. We are, as they say, in "an era of fiscal restraint," with tight scrutiny on travel, conference, and training budgets. We all understand that the lines between fields such as policy and communications are blurring, that there are inter-dependencies, and that collaboration is incredibly important. But for an given practitioner, staying informed about their field is still the primary concern, and they're naturally going to maintain relationships with their core community first.

Economically, it's like an artificial cultural ceiling on the supply and demand of public servant relationship-building and collaboration. The question is whether that ceiling is appropriately set in pursuit of broader system goals.

It has become en vogue to ask about communities and conferences, "Who else needs to be here? Who else should we be talking to?" Which is a good question, but if you can't get to their communities, and your community is a few bullets down the priority list for them, it's impractical to expect anyone to bridge that gap.

Creating slack, in this case, would be treating relationship-building with core communities as a given - creating room on the margins to better understand the peripheral players that influence our portfolios.


Innovation


Google's 20% innovation time doesn't work for everyone. We were all excited about it five years ago, but if it doesn't square with culture, if innovation isn't actually a core goal (which is often appropriate), or if your work doesn't progress through that style of idea generation, it's a silver bullet with no gun and no werewolves.

Since, we've matured in our debate about free time and innovation. Is it slack in the system that generates innovation? Or pressure? It's hard to say, and the only true answer is probably "it depends". However, a recent research paper adds an interesting thesis to the debate (h/t)The short version of the paper: school breaks lead to a sharp increase in Kickstarter ideas being launched and funded because it creates time for mundane tasks.

Their conclusion is that slack time does indeed lead to innovation, but not for the reasons we thought. Instead of allowing creativity and the generation of ideas, slack time allows people the time to execute and move their ideas forward.

However, many public administrators opt for the pressure approach, or are limited to it as an option. In an age of "do better with less", I've seen a worrying trend of people being forced to rush the "better." These are ideas that might work, given the time to do it right. But when people are asked to Innovate right now!pressure gets the better of rigour.


Slack


Slack, as it's traditionally regarded, is expensive. However, it seems probable that it's often worth it, albeit in hard-to-measure ways. If that's true, we have two options: create slack, or re-define activities like relationship-building, idea-sharing, focus-grouping, assumption-testing, and the like — those intangibles often first in line for the chopping block — as part of the job description, as part of the ongoing pressure. 



The Problem With Engagement

Monday, June 22, 2015
by Melissa Tullio RSS / cpsrenewalFacebook / cpsrenewaltwitter / creativegov

I left a comment on Kent's recent post (See: The Future Of Online Communities) that was probably out of scope of what his post was about, and started reflecting on engagement in digital spaces versus in real life. Here's a challenge question I started thinking about: "How might we make the best use of technology/online systems to capture public sentiment and insights in a deeper way?" (I'm not going to attempt to navigate that one in this post, but maybe a future post.)

I think the key to this is something Kent also asked, which got me thinking in a different direction: "The question [about online collaboration] will move from 'How can we get people to engage?' to 'Who actually needs to engage, and why would they, in particular?'"

There's an assumption we make in government, especially in the communications world where I work, that whenever we make an announcement or hold a consultation, people are engaged and interested and will come. This isn't generally a bad assumption to make. We do get engagement; we do get people at the town halls and consultations we run. But the people who attend often represent people who we've heard from, time and again, over the years. The outcome of these consultations is almost completely predictable - we issue management the hell out of it; we can anticipate responses, and come up with plans to "mitigate" them.

So my next challenge question would be, "What's the point?" If you're doing a consultation and you know what you're going to hear, isn't it a big waste of time and resources to do it? Can't we do it in a more meaningful way that generates new solutions or ways to work together?

Beyond the Usual Suspects

One thing about design thinking that's different than other problem solving methods is taking time to interview and empathize with extreme users. It's crucially valuable to do this because taking time to reach out to, and empathizing with, extreme users helps to reveal the deeper, more systemic challenges in the design of your service/program.

This type of ethnographic research is not something we normally do enough of in government. We tend to create policies/programs that end up working for the mainstream user. The way we come to create programs is based on well researched best practices (i.e., existing solutions), which inevitably leaves some users behind in the process. This approach doesn't include extreme users in the problem definition stages (or problem solving stages), so we assume that what we design is good enough, without examining all those hidden assumptions we're making. The kind of research and deeper understanding that you need to do to really empathize with service users requires time, and in a lot of our work in the policy making environment (and exponentially more in the communications space), time is (artificially) something we don't have1.

Another challenge isn't just the process/resource barrier in government work from doing this kind of research. Even if you design a program/policy to include time for this kind of deep dive research, how do you make the case for people who you don't normally interact with to gain your trust and let you into their spaces?

What's In It For Them?

When I previously worked in an HR role for Ontario, I was one of the people responsible for the formal employee recognition program. Something we constantly struggled with was how to tap into people's intrinsic motivation for doing things. There are a lot of smarter people than me who have done research in this area, and the short answer is, "it's complicated." I was most interested in what motivates people to engage and interact with online spaces because another file I worked on was an ideas management system, and I was curious about why these kinds of systems often fail.

Something my team learned is that online engagement is limited. Taking idea generation to the next level requires an in person component that can't be replaced by online platforms (not yet, anyway). An ideas campaign, followed by observational/ethnographic research to figure out what you're missing, followed by a hackathon/jam/competition of some sort to test some theories, followed by an experiment/prototype-making stage, followed by reflections/sharing lessons to improve something, is what you need to make the campaign work through the full spectrum of engagement.
Stanford dschool design thinking steps

That goes back to the old constraint: who has time for this?

Online and in-person engagement

From everything we learned, online platforms simply aren't enough; some tangible, shared outcome from the ideation or consultation stage is needed in order for people to believe you're doing something for them, or else they lose faith and you lose credibility (See: Pulling the Trigger on Chekhov's Gun). Many people are happy with engaging online at the front-end - it's low-friction and easy (also less valuable to gain deeper insights); extreme users, the ones we need to take time for to understand better, need more (and so do we if we want to reach those deeper insights to design things better).

Any online or offline engagement platform not only needs to ask the question, "who needs to engage?" but "who else needs to engage who isn't already raising their hand to volunteer?" Knowing how to answer the corollary question, "how do we motivate them to?" is definitely the tougher one.

1. I'd say resources (people/funding) are something we have less and less of in a more real way than time; time for empathy/good design can be worked into our processes (assuming we've taken a good look at our culture and we're able to move towards changing it to include mindsets like human centered design in our work).

On Transformational Leadership in the Digital Era

Friday, June 19, 2015

by Nick Charney RSS / cpsrenewalFacebook / cpsrenewalLinkedIn / Nick Charneytwitter / nickcharneygovloop / nickcharneyGoogle+ / nickcharney

On Monday I had the opportunity to speak to a room full of Ontario Public Servants about Innovation and Digital Transformation; my Prezi and speaking notes are below.



Good morning everyone.

My name is Nicholas Charney.

I am currently the Director for Engagement and Innovation at the Institute on Governance (IOG); which is just fancy way of saying I got to pick my title.

Before I launch into my remarks this morning I feel as though I should be a good corporate citizen and tell you a little about myself and the IOG.

We are small not for profit organization whose mission is to advance better governance in the public interest.

We pursue that mission through our virtuous circle of advisory work, courses and research programs.

I'm a policy professional by trade and am currently on a two year interchange from the Government of Canada where I've spent the last 8 years working at the confluence of people, public policy and technology.

My core responsibility at the IOG is to help build out or digital governance applied research program.

The program is based on the premise that two forces – digital and governance – are meeting like tectonic plates, shifting the landscape and giving rise to new peaks and valleys around key governance questions that all citizens need to be concerned about:
  • Who has real power?
  • How should decisions be made?
  • How can all players make their voices heard and ensure that account is rendered. 
We've divided the research into a number of applied domains: policy analysis, service delivery, regulation and accountability.

You can learn more about the project, how to get involved and even watch the star studded panels from our launch event at iog.ca/digital.

Now, with that out of the way, there are a number of things I could say to you about digital transformation. 

I could start by saying that having the right skills is essential.

Or, that a talent-focused culture is critical.

Or, that organizational agility is the key to effective outcomes.

But I could say all of that and have said nothing.

I'd rather start out by saying that digital transformation is what you as leaders make of it.

That there is no shortage of wicked problems, demand for ideas, or need to bring them bear.

That technology and the Zeitgeist are combining in some interesting ways and changing the nature of the public service.

That these changes are creating both challenges and opportunities that require us to think differently than we have in the past.

That's what I want to spend the majority of my remarks on today: thinking differently.

I'm often told that I think differently about problems than others do.

And to be honest I'm not entirely sure it’s a compliment. It gets me into trouble with my wife and it gets my children into trouble too.

Case in point, I have a very particular view on innovation (See: Innovation is Tricky, Literally and Finding Innovation).

My view on innovation is largely informed by a book by Lewis Hyde  – a cultural anthropologist – entitled Trickster Makes This World: How Disruptive Imagination Creates Culture.

According to Hyde, Tricksters are classical cultural figures.

They represent a certain flexibility of mind and spirit, a willingness to defy authority and invent clever solutions that keeps cultures (and stories) from becoming too stagnant.
  • crosses physical and social boundaries
  • traveller / nomad
  • blurs distinctions between right and wrong
  • invents new cultural goods or tools 
  • sexually over-active, irresponsible, and amoral. 
  • creative liars 
  • tells stories that make people laugh and inspire
Wait – let’s just redact a couple of lines there to keep the FIPPA people happy.

There we go.

Tricksters have something to say about how culture gets created, and about the nature of intelligence.

They steal fire from the gods, give it to man, and remake the world. 

In contemporary innovation rhetoric: they break traditional trade-offs, create new markets, and reveal the art of the possible.

In collaboration rhetoric: they use flattening communications technologies to cut across hierarchy, create new channels for influence and show the stark contrast between the world out there and the command and control culture in here.

Admittedly that’s how I go my start: experimenting with social media for collaboration behind the firewall.

As you can imagine I fancy myself a bit of trickster. 

I think it’s an incredibly important role, and one that I've chosen purposefully, because I'm willing to accept the risks, bear the consequences, and reap the rewards.

Now you may have noticed that this idea of innovation as tricksterism is a cultural approach to innovation rather than an institutionalized approach to innovation – say in the form of innovation labs.

I prefer to focus on the culture because whenever someone points a finger at what isn't working in the bureaucracy its almost always the culture. 

I prefer prioritizing people to structure and think that in many ways the root of many of our problems is the fact that we often prioritize them the other way around.

But rather than get up on that soapbox I’d rather show you something that tricksters can get up to when you put a little technology in their curious little hands.

In the federal government there is this thing called the Treasury Board Policy Suite.

Essentially it’s all of the rules that all federal civil servants need to abide by and is commonly referred to by public servants as the web of rules.

Here's what it is supposed to look like according to Treasury Board.
  • 1 Code of Conduct - Values and Ethics; 
  • 8 policy frameworks; 
  • 73 policies; 
  • 76 directives; 
  • 56 standards; and 
  • 59 guidelines.
For a total of 273 different policy instruments. 

Now I took some time and went through the suite and mapped the actual relationships between these instruments (See: Redux: Visualizing the Entire Treasury Board Policy Suite). 

Truth be told the web of rules looks more like this.

As you can see the two are very different beasts.

First a note on methodology.

There's a 'related instruments' tab on each instrument that provides a hyperlink to instruments that ought to be considered in conjunction with that which you are currently reading.

The visualization simply represents those relationships.

Size depicts prevalence, e.g. the number of connections the instrument has to others.

Colour depicts instrument type.

Line type and arrows – which are there but impossible to see at this distance – represent directionality and type of relationship. 

The first thing worth noting is that the placement of Values and Ethics is not central as it was in the official representation.

The heart of the suite is right here in what I call the culture cluster is right here.

You can see how tightly wound up it is.

And why it might be so hard to innovate in these spaces, there’s simply too much oversight and control.

The cluster is pretty much exactly what you would expect: 
  • Policy on Government Security | 88# | 33%
  • Policy on Internal Control | 71# | 26%
  • Policy on Management of Information Technology | 59# | 22%
  • Policy on Privacy Protection | 56# | 20%
  • Policy on Information Management | 55# | 20%
Conversely, if you look at the periphery, where there is likely more room to innovate you will see that there is very little of consequence out there to innovate on.

Transformational institutional change is unlikely to be found in the Workplace Fitness Program Policy, the Uniform Directive or the Policy on Workplace Daycare Centres.

That said, I'm more than sympathetic to an argument that much good could come from innovation in those areas from an employee wellness perspective but that is likely a conversation for another day.

Now I put this thing together in my free time with some free online tools that I've never used before.

I published it to my blog along with some of my preliminary thoughts.

The thing went viral – or at least it went government viral, meaning that a couple of thousand people saw it.

I got a phone call from a Director General’s office whom I've never met who wanted a briefing on my work.

She just so happened to be the person responsible for the renewal of the policy suite.

I went in to brief her and her team.

Later I went in to brief her ADM.

Everyone wanted to know why I would do such a thing?

For me the answer was simple, because the opportunity was there waiting for someone to pluck it out of the sky.

Because I crossed social boundaries and knew the policy suite renewal was coming down the pipe before it was officially announced.

Because I was an outsider and was free to experiment.

Because I was curious and wanted to blur the lines a little.

Because I was able to use new tools and technologies to create a new lens through which we could look at the problem.

Because I was looking for an opportunity to be creative.

Because I wanted to be able to tell the story.

Because that’s what tricksters do.

Pretty impressive right?

Truth be told this data visualization is fairly bush league when you think about the scale and pace of changes that are on the horizon. 

I mapped something a handful of bureaucrats care about. 

It’s the wild west out there right now.

Governments services are being compared to private sector services.
The media’s business model has imploded and created a perverse incentive structure that rewards muckraking, click bating and faux outrage.

Your staff email, text, Facebook, Twitter and snap-chat, each other all day and can circumvent any attempt you make to limit their ability to communicate with someone else.

In many cases they can send a direct message on Twitter directly to a Minister. Directly to their Minister.

Their online profile can be analyzed, partisanship inferred, and then targeted for scandal through a freedom of information request

And that’s just a fraction of what’s going on. 

Everyone carries a government issued GPS device in their pocket, you could collect, aggregate and analyze that data to know exactly how big of a physical footprint you need, how to better plan public transit to your office locations, when and where elevators should rest in those office locations and even what unit should be located next to another.

And what about drones, don’t even get me started on drones.

An engineering student in Europe built a prototype of a drone that is equipped with a defibrillator.

There’s a great Youtube video, I suggest you go watch it.

This is a major technological advancement in public health.

But what about liabilities?

What happens when urban drone hunting becomes a pass time?

What about drinking and droning?

I could go on at length.

But instead I want to close out my remarks by giving you some advice on where I think you can find innovators in your organization. 

As leaders if you aren't trying to identify and groom people who see the world differently than you do you aren't doing your job effectively. 

Transformative leaders incubate the next generation of transformational people, curate their ideas and lay the ground work today for them to be successful tomorrow.

I want to close out my remarks by giving you some advice on where you can find innovation within your organization. 

Look to immigrants or nomads.

Those who are new to your organization or those who move around a lot may in fact be your most innovative.

New arrivals bring fresh eyes, instinctively connect their new experiences with their previous ones creating a new middle ground for the organization to explore.

Look to people who can take more than a single world view.

They have a diversity of interests that drives them to read things from and maintain relationship in different sectors.

As a result they bring in ideas that seem foreign to many but yet always seem to contain some kernel worth exploring

Look to those who are willing to start from square one, willing to walk away from sunk costs and challenge the fundamental assumptions that dominate the discourse.

People who don't accept that the answer "because that is the the way we've always done it here”

Look to people who are good communicators.

People who make you feel at ease about things that you are usually uneasy about, who easily bridge the gap between those at the working level and senior managers, knowing how to couch their words with either group.

Look to the people who are comfortable with change.

They see everything as an opportunity and welcome whatever the newly reshaped world has in store for them.

Finally, look to the troublemakers.

The peoples whose transgressive nature exposes the more deeply problematic roots of more systemic and pressing problems.

They use intellect, humour and satire whenever possible, nothing is off limits, and as a result they wind up getting into hot water now and again.

Your job as transformational leaders is to inspire, encourage and when necessary, protect, them.

The future of your organizations depends on it.

Thank you.