We're innovation experts

With a passion for collaboration and sharing knowledge,
just like our namesake.

Our HI Story

Our story began in 1999 when innovation wasn’t widely adopted. Except, of course, for Apple, who was about to release the first iPod or Microsoft launching their ‘new’ Windows 98. But the reality for most leaders and organisations was that innovation was too hard, expensive and unproven. 

Allan Ryan was an experienced CEO with a background in engineering and a fascination for how things work. And he was curious. Responsible for over 500 staff, he knew firsthand how ideas and innovation could transform an organisation. So Allan embarked on a quest to research and understand innovation success in large organisations. Landing at the Australian Graduate School of Management, he worked with the best local and global leaders of change and growth.

Then, in 2002, with a unique understanding of innovation, practical experience and extensive research, Allan started his consultancy, Managed Innovation International. There, he put his theories into practice, helping clients innovate and deliver successful projects. In doing so, he experienced the impact of asking different questions and the benefits of focusing on people first. 

Importantly, he learned what made some companies more successful than others and could definitively link an organisation’s results and performance to its approach to innovation. He also started to understand that even vastly different organisations faced similar challenges.

Finally, during a conversation in 2005, Roche (a long-term client) asked:

"How do we learn - how do we excel - when we're already very, very good?"
How can organisations continue to grow and improve? Where does new knowledge come from? How do we know if something works – or not? Or short-cut trial and error and fast-track success?

The answer they found was “to have conversations with diverse companies that are very good and meet people who are different and who we can talk to about their experiences.”

So in 2006, Hargraves was established with the commitment of 12 founding organisations – including Roche. A collaborative community underpinned by a Charter and shared purpose. That purpose being: to enhance Australian businesses’ competitiveness and financial performance through innovation, identify and exchange best practices and build a network outside current industries to broaden business outlook.

Or, in simple terms, “to help Australia become more innovative through collaboration and collective wisdom”.

Over the years, we’ve transformed and adapted. Today our open, collaborative community includes leaders, teams, individuals, global partners and experts. With leading-edge tools, programs and resources to boost performance and growth for everyone.

Community, collaboration and innovation: it’s in our DNA.

Why are we called ‘Hargraves Institute’?

Our name recognises the Australian aviation pioneer Lawrence Hargrave, innovator and inventor of the box kite. Hargrave believed passionately in open communication. He refused to patent his inventions, instead allowing them to benefit anyone who wished to use them.

We take our name from the first commercially available aircraft built by Gabriel Voisin. Voisin called the box-wing cells’ Hargraves’. With our Charter reflecting that same “willingness to share experience for the benefit of others”.

Our vision is to seek out new ways of working that inspire individuals to be their best, embracing collaboration and innovation in everything they do.

At Hargraves, we’re passionate about sharing your innovation journey and helping create opportunities for leaders and teams to make change happen.

With a mission to deliver tools and techniques for better ideas, better people and better performance, we’re committed to building diverse and innovative organisations every day. Our ‘People-First’ innovation and tools approach puts people at the core of innovation rather than ideas. That is, creating healthy collaboration habits in and across teams, exploring practical tools and techniques to boost performance and growth, and understanding your role in making innovation happen.

Draw on our unique experience to deliver a proven approach with real benefits – for you, your team, and your organisation.

Meet Our Team

Our team includes experts with hands-on experience across all sectors, with backgrounds in innovation, people and culture, training, process and idea development.

In addition, we collaborate with experts who share their specific knowledge with Hargraves and our community.

Hargraves Team Allan Ryan Tess Julian Sandra Loader Leisl Kimber

We recognise the following organisations for their commitment to helping establish Hargraves and develop our vision and Charter.

Our Founding Members (Alumni)

Roche Products, Cochlear, Jacobs Australia, Mars Food Australia, Westpac Banking Corporation, BlueScope Steel, Australian Wool Innovation, Boeing Australia, Caltex Australia Petroleum, Aristocrat Technologies Australia, George Weston Technologies, Cerebos (Australia).

And Advisory Council (Alumni)

Dulux, Food Innovation Australia Limited, AMP, Australian Department of Health, BGIS, CSIRO Future Industries Sector, Selleys, CSR Building Products Limited.

Need some help?​

We’ve been helping leaders, teams and organisations for almost 20 years. 
We can help you too.

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