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Harvard Business School professor Linda Hill spent almost 10 years studying extraordinary leaders of innovation across several industries. Her team’s work repudiates conventional thinking that visionary leadership inspires innovation. Rather, says Hill, “collective genius” is the secret sauce of successful creations. getAbstract recommends Hill’s fascinating analysis and anecdotes to leaders hoping to boost their companies’ innovation engines.


Conventional wisdom says that to manage for innovation, a single leader must outline an inspiring vision for a team to follow. Yet a visionary leader’s true role in innovation is that of a “social architect.” A study of outstanding innovation leaders in seven nations revealed that “collective genius,” not “solo genius,” is responsible for innovation.

Pixar provides an apt case study. Each Pixar movie takes four to five years to complete and involves the collaboration of some 250 employees. With so many contributors and egos working on a project, how does the innovative organization generate excellence ...

About the Speaker

Linda Hill is a management professor at Harvard Business School and co-author of Collective Genius.

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