California Management Review
California Management Review is a premier academic management journal published at UC Berkeley
by George S. Day and Gregory Shea
To achieve faster organic growth, firms need to change their prevailing narrative about innovation from growth denying to growth enabling. This requires changing the system through which the work of innovation gets done. This article describes the work systems model of organizational change and shows how a leadership team can select the most influential elements of the system to make a desired narrative a reality. Four elements of the work system are especially effective at encouraging a growth-affirming narrative: leadership commitment to innovation talent, prudent risk-taking, customer-centric innovation, and aligning metrics and incentives.