Innovation and the Leader essay

Innovationand the Leader

Mostorganizations face challenges in the process of innovation.regardless of the size of their firm. For a given company to grow,innovation is a key force, and every member should be activelyinvolved. In particular, leaders have a critical role to play insituations where a company is in the innovation process. Leaders arethe reason behind the success or failure of any change project thathas commenced in any business. Therefore, leaders should ensure thatthey lay down the strategies that will make sure that any form ofcreativity in the company is properly managed and encouraged. Leadersare the catalysts and the only sources of creativity and innovation.Leaders should ensure that they establish an environment that isconducive towards the innovation process.

Roleof the leader in identifying and harnessing emerging trends andinnovation opportunities

Ina study that was taken about the library change, the managersresponded that their roles as managers were responsible forfacilitating the process of innovation in their organizations (Jantz,2012). The leadership enables them to be in a position to implementthe incremental and revolutionary change, which will ensure that theinnovation process is successful. The managers should ensure thatthey coordinate the activities of the different cultures by takingspecific roles as well as ensuring that any further resistances thatmay arise in the organization are minimized. Likewise, leaders shouldmake sure that they make innovation integral parts that will help theorganizations grow in the long-run. This will enable the libraryleaders to take the initiative of creating a conducive environmentthat will ensure that innovation process is successful (Jantz, 2012).

Leadersare imperative in the process of innovation according to the researchdone by Agbor. Leaders are the reason why we have creative andeffective organizations globally. They drive and control any type ofchanges that are mandatory for the company to achieve the requiredinnovation. Although other factors are necessary for the company togain a competitive advantage, leaders are also critical in thisprocess. Leaders play a significant role in making importantdecisions concerning what should be done in the organization and inwhich manner. They give the direction for the innovation process anddo anything possible that is required to make sure that the wholeprocess has thrived. During the process of laying down the procedureof work that is carried out in the company, leaders implement thestrategies that are meant to accomplish the projects that havecommenced. Therefore, for the organization to succeed leaders mustsupport, encourage, and inspire all the employees in the organizationso that they can see the reason for them to support the innovation.If the whole process is to succeed, the management of theorganization should ensure that they put the right leaders in placewho knows what should be done and the recommended way to achieve theintended target. Thus, leaders have the responsibility of ensuringthat they develop that interest in innovation so that they willidentify the required power to push the process forward and employthe necessary strategies that will ensure the whole project issuccessful. The reverse is true if the leaders will not perceive theavailable opportunities or proper exploitation. They will become animpediment to the whole process and innovation will probably fail asit will lack the necessary effort from the appropriate personnel.Innovation will only be successful if the leaders develop therequired attitude and the capacity to support the new ideas in theenterprise (Agbor, 2008).

Roleof the leader in leveraging organizational capabilities

Leveragingis an opportunity that can be found through research and theflexibility that the leaders have towards the change. For anorganization to achieve the opportunity there should be moral leadersin the company who should lay down strategies that ensure that theculture of their institution is given priority in the course ofventuring into new markets. Such leaders have a role of using theconcept of presencing in the context of leveraging the new marketswhile embracing the emerging innovation. The capabilities toinnovation can only be connected if the leaders ensure that theystrengthen it. Leaders also ensure that the required foundation ofknowledge has been provided to make sure that the new ideas areproperly put into use (McLain, Codagnone, and Reed, 2013).

Accordingto a report given by PWC, innovation is the central idea if anorganization is to experience the required growth. If the fundamentalstrategies have been put in place in the organization, the leadershave a role to ensure that they leverage the technology so thatinnovation will get the ground to succeed. Leaders should make surethat all the IT investments that are laid down in the company supportthe growth strategies of the business as well as ensuring that theemerging innovations are leveraged. They should show great mastery inthe way the technologies that are innovation-oriented work and howthey should be leveraged to achieve the intended target in theprocess. Further, they should ensure that the technologies put downsupport the process of innovation and things are done in the rightmanner at the right moment. All people involved in the change shouldgive and receive the required information that necessitates the newideas (PWC, 2012).

Critiqueof methods employed by leaders to overcome resistance

Resistanceto change is normal in any organization and leaders often usedifferent strategies to overcome that opposing power. The firststrategy employed is the negotiation where the change leaders try tosmoothen out the discrepancies and tensions in the process of changein the organizations. While negotiating, the focus is on specificobjectives. Although it can work, it also poses a challenge toleaders. If the employees are adamant to the negotiation deal, thewhole process will fail.

Thesecond method used is manipulation that can covertly influence thosewho opposes change to accept the transformation. This is even moredangerous according to critics because if people later realize thatthey were manipulated, they will lay down strategies that willdisrupt the whole process. The employees will lack trust in themanagement, and there will be a continued crisis in the organization.

Thelast method that is employed to deal with the resistance to change iscoercion where the behaviors of the employees are followed keenly.They are as well reminded of their obligations and at the same time,the management uses threatening remarks for those who fail to honorthe change process. Critics say that this method undermines thereputation of the company and any further intervention in the futurewill be viewed from a negative perspective (Crouzet and Parker,2014).


Undeniably,the whole process of innovation relies on the different roles thatleaders play in an organization or business. Proper strategies needto be laid down, and the leaders should ensure that their effortseliminate any limitation factor to the process of innovation.


Agbor,E. (2008). Creativity and Innovation: The Leadership Dynamics.Journalof Strategic Leadership, 1(1),39-45, Retrieved from May 16, 2016.

Crouzet,B &amp Parker, D. W. (2014). Preparingfor Productivity Intervention Initiatives,Retrieved from May 16, 2016.

Jantz,C. R. (2012). Innovation in Academic Libraries: An Analysis ofUniversity Librarians’ Perspectives. Journalof Library &amp Information Science Research 34,3-12, Retrieved from May 16, 2016.

McLain,S., Cadognone, R &amp Reed, L. (2013). MoralLeadership: Executive Servant Leadership as a Means to OvercomingOrganizational Resistance to Innovation,Retrieved from May 16, 2016.

PwC.(2012). Howto Drive Innovation and Business Growth,Retrieved from May 16, 2016.