The Role of Leadership in Nurturing a Culture of Innovation.

The advent of the COVID-19 pandemic brought about an unprecedented disruption to all spheres of human endeavors. It resulted in broken down structures and systems that could no longer deliver desired outcomes. Yet, despite all these adverse impacts, this period witnessed many innovative solutions that have propelled commerce and industry to productivity levels they never attained before the pandemic. New ways of service delivery via the online platform have resulted in doorstep deliveries of many products. The crisis created a platform for innovation.

The description above echoes EMIT’s story; we had to produce a new way of providing our service to thousands of people across the continent of Africa. We adapted to delivering our service to small, localized groups, ensuring that we remained viable and relevant amid the pandemic. The main reason for our success is that we initiated and encouraged a culture of innovation among our Project Leaders and Facilitators. This involved communicating clearly with our core team the importance of the shift to small groups and the positive impact it would bring to our service delivery during the pandemic. The team embraced the new concept and creatively implemented it.

Leadership has played a crucial role in encouraging a culture of continuous innovation by setting the right tone and empowering our team.

The Executive Team took up the role of empowering our Project Leaders and Facilitators with necessary resources such as time, budget, and tools, to explore the best way to implement the new concept, encouraging creativity and knowledge sharing.

Our willingness to embrace change in a time of crisis, and take a very calculated risk, created a safe space for our team to add their innovative ideas without fear of failure or judgment. This, in turn, has created a culture of continuous learning and improvement in delivering our product.