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Finding growth with knowledge exponentiation

I’ve been doing a tremendous number of small, intimate CEO level leadership meetings; I’ll work with the CEO or other senior management team member to pull together a talk that will highlight the key opportunities for growth through innovation within an industry.

I often point out that there are significant innovation and revenue growth opportunities when an organization concentrates on mastering the rapid emergence of new knowledge within a specific sector.

Take the world of construction; I’ve recently spoken at quite a few building management, construction and real estate conferences, and have focused on the fact that we are now witnessing very fast knowledge exponentiation with “green” design concepts.

What’s happening is that we are seeing:

  • the rapid emergence of new building methodologies, design concepts, materials, eco-design principles, all of which have the goal of reducing the overall energy footprint of the building, or reducing its environmental impact
  • the result is that green building methodology is continuing to evolve at a furious pace
  • there is so much new knowledge emerging that a new profession of “energy engineers” is beginning to emerge
  • their skill and role is simply to keep on top of furious rates of change in terms of new energy management solutions within the building and construction sector
  • developments are occurring so quickly that these individuals possess three key skills: how to rapidly ingest new knowledge and new ideas; awareness of where this new knowledge is emerging; and the ability to tap into other specialized skill sets and form rapid skills partnerships in order to tackle growth opportunities

The result is the emergence of a new career of “green engineers” who simply know where to find all the new knowledge and expertise that is appearing out there!

This is pretty significant stuff: after all, some 40% of total US energy consumption can be attributed to operating buildings: the heat, light, cooling, hot water and other systems. Another 8% of energy use is related to the materials used. All the SUV’s in North America? Three percent!

Clearly, there are BIG opportunities for growth through innovation, through the mastery of fast knowledge.

That’s why I always challenge a CEO and senior management team to challenge themselves with workforce innovation.

That involves innovation with different workplace policies, career paths, workforce structure, experiential oriented job descriptions, skills banks for specialized skills, and a rapid focus on growth through the rapid emergence of new knowledge within that workforce.

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