Innovation is demonstrated in a manner of different ways. It can be technological, it can be transformational. It can be driven by the work you undertake with people, the impact you have on a market or your ability to bring about real change through new ways of thinking.
The Innovation Gallery is a series of interviews from within the Konductor network, talking to the innovative and inspirational individuals, asking questions with a difference.
Name: Jacqui Rigby
Role: Transformational leader
Part one: the interview (the questions they didn’t want to answer)
What is the most challenging part of your job and why?
Aligning people at a senior level. It’s rare to work in a high performing team and it’s even harder further up the organisation. I spend a lot of time trying to align the peer group and it’s tough.
What has been your greatest professional failure and what did you learn?
Dealing with people who think very differently to me and recognising this as a positive rather than a negative.
I worked with someone who had a very different style to me and the HR Director sat me down and said you’re not being fair to this person and you’re not getting the best out of them. They suggested I think of them as a person with a family, and it really challenged my perspective. It genuinely turned the relationship into a positive one.
In that moment, I recognised my own thought process could be damaging and it had a profound effect on me.
Worst piece of advice ever received and why?
Be less opinionated because you have too many opinions. As a result I stopped being myself and stopped voicing my opinions. I stopped being ‘me’. Authenticity is an important part of who I am, as is having opinions to share!
What keeps you awake at night?
Very little most of the time, but usually it’s the little things – maybe a problem I’m trying to work through that’s not resolved, something that is nagging that I can’t quite switch off from. It usually involves people.
And then there are airplanes, as I live on the flight path at Manchester Airport.
Most is the pointless job you have ever done?
I worked in a clinical trials organisation and spent all my time writing policies and shuffling paper. It was pointless as not what I wanted to do. I was not adding value and not serving a purpose.
What constitutes success to you?
Three simple things:
- Doing something good for the customer
- Doing something good for the people you work with
- Doing good for the bottom line
…all are interlinked
Most insightful piece of customer/client feedback you’ve ever received?
We undertook some research into gifting to understand why and how we choose gifts. We split the group into pairs and each was asked to gift something to other person and go through process of what they would give, wrap it and then undertake the exchange.
We observed what happens when you give a gift to someone else and listened to people telling the story behind their gift – it was very emotional.
We turned a seemingly thoughtless process of a digital gift and gift card into a thoughtful exchange.
What would your nearest and dearest say frustrates them most about you?
Not finishing my cup of tea (it’s the silly little things)
Part two: Quick fire
- Android or Apple? Android
- Words or numbers? Words
- Transformational or visionary? Transformational
- Red or blue? red
- Lark or owl? lark
- Coffee or tea? Coffee
- Sweet or savoury? Savoury
- Twitter or LinkedIn? Linked in
- Times or Guardian? Guardian (the style of writing not necessarily the politics)
- Radio Four or Five Live? Five live