We were only a few minutes into our opening session when this quote, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” was shared with us, and when our Ignite class would understand just how empowering this day was going to be.
Our day at Humana was all about culture and innovation – two imperatives for keeping associates connected and business purpose alive. An, what better company to host such a day than the one that is paving the way of innovation in healthcare right here in Louisville. Timothy State, Enterprise VP of HR at Humana, kicked off our day by explaining how companies must know its “why”. The “Why do we exist?” question should be fundamental and the answer should undoubtedly help shape how it grows. Mr. State shared some guiding principles to designing a purpose-driven innovation culture that includes building a movement that employees, customers, and communities can all stand with. Now, most from our Ignite class don’t work in healthcare or in product development roles per se, but Mr. State’s talk on the importance of developing relationships, experiences, people, and purpose had familiar traces no matter where you work or what you do. Our day was just getting started and the tone was set.
We next heard from Lisa Zangari, Director of Learning at Leadership Louisville Center, who challenged us to release our inner creative-selves and have a little fun learning how we can develop innovation within our own worlds.
Innovation and business success aren’t things that just come automatically from a good idea. Just ask the inventors of the Segway. Innovation, we learned, relies on paying attention to key insights that lead to solving real problems. But, how do you develop insights and how do you become creative in coming up with solutions? It’s something we hear all the time, “just think outside the box!” Well, that’s a process easier said than done. But, there are techniques that can loosen up your mind to think more clearly. Lisa Zangari explained these techniques, or behaviors, that are actually very easy to incorporate and can have massive impacts in your ability to think creatively. That’s when we heard another quote shared, “Behavior eats process for breakfast.” Your attitude and behaviors are everything, we discussed. You can turn an idea like an invisible clothing line or a traveling men’s spa truck into something brilliant perhaps if you understand this. However, the second part to this is understanding your environment. The teams we work with have an incredible impact on our mindsets. I think this concept resonated clearly among our Ignite teams, as we know how important a strong team is to achieving success with our program projects.
We had an incredible lineup of presenters for the day and we were grateful for Humana hosting our day filled with invaluable insights. We were challenged to keep our minds fresh and to stay positive as we build out our own purpose-driven careers. With that mindset, we can affect real change in our workplaces and within our Ignite projects. Right after we eat breakfast, of course.