Sir Richard Branson has been described as the “catalyst that transforms potential energy in a project or idea into kinetic energy that sends people scurrying in a thousand directions,” Des Dearlove, author of Business the Branson Way.
In chemistry, a catalyst is a chemical that accelerates a reaction and is not consumed by the reaction. In innovative organisations, a catalyst accelerates the progress of a team or individual innovator, without being consumed by it or owning the idea or project. Catalysts enable the project to take place but do not actually carry out the work.
Branson is renowned for his backseat leadership and surrounding himself with talented people. Though many may mistake him for an innovator, Branson is a catalyst, he provides the resources and energy to enable his employees to innovate, acting as the mechanism that facilitates momentum. Branson relies on his teams to come up with the ideas and then enables them to happen.
Have you ever had a good idea at work, one that would have improved the project or business, and not had the confidence to share it? A catalyst is a person you would feel confident sharing with. Catalysts understand how organisations work and help innovators to succeed. Do you know how to spot a catalyst in your organisation or are you the catalyst? Do you want to learn to be a catalyst?
On 26th March, Australia’s most successful catalyst, Annalie Killian, Catalyst for Magic, AMP, will be sharing her secrets at the Hargraves Institute annual conference. She will be joined by Stephen Hickey, Partner, Aon Hewitt, who will be sharing his talent-spotting expertise to provide insights into identifying catalysts.
You don’t need to be an eccentric, creative type like Branson to be considered a successful innovator. Like Branson, you can be successful at innovating by being the crucial cog in the wheel that creates momentum, the catalyst.
Hargraves Conference 2014. Share real innovation stories; meet the innovation teams from leading Australian companies; and collaborate with our diverse range of Hargraves members.