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Q & A with Gabrielle Benefield and Tim Beattie

In the build up to the Study of Enterprise Agility Conference (SEACON) in November, I caught up with Gabrielle Benefild, Founder of Mobiusloop, and Tim Beattie, Open Innovation Labs Lead at Red Hat) to asked them a few questions.

At SEACON, Gabrielle and Tim will be talking about Outcome delivery in the opening session on the Main stage.

Here's what they had to say...

How would you describe what you do?

We help people solve problems, and find the simplest path through complexity.

What will you be talking about at SEACON?

Here's a brief overview...

The Mobius loop: How to generate outcomes that matter

Outcomes and OKRs are the new buzzwords. We all want to be outcome-driven, but how do we get started, and avoid the common pitfalls?

We will talk about shifting the focus from Outputs to Outcomes and creating a culture of continuous Improvement. Using real-life examples from healthcare to innovation labs, We'll share their stories and give you some practical tips to get started.

Obviously focussing on outcomes is important but how do organizations ensure "headline" outcomes are achieved without compromising other outcomes such as quality of the product, employee happiness etc.?

Great question. Metrics, outcomes and OKRs are the new poster child for organizations, and with them a whole new set of problems. One of the biggest pitfalls is management imposing metrics on the rest of the organization. This leads to unhealthy competition and the loss of customer and employee happiness. One of the leading causes of this behaviour are the incentive and reward structures. Leaping to metrics is as bad as leaping to solutions too early. Instead you need to design a system that aligns and guides people towards continuous learning with the outcomes as their compass. The people delivering the strategy, also need to be part of creating it. We need to rethink our notion of ‘teams’ and create combined strategy to delivery teams. Without handoffs and loss of understanding.

Instead of focusing only on the metrics, focus on building situational awareness, and create rapid learning loops. Look at outcomes as your destination that you can innovate and experiment towards, but don’t impose metrics without understanding.

More and more leadership teams use OKRs ( Objectives and Key Results) to articulate outcomes. How do organizations choose the right OKRs?

This takes us back to the journey. You need to understand the situation deeply before you jump to your OKRs. This is a team sport, not to be done by individuals in isolation. Once you really understand the problems, and have data to back it up, then and only then can you understand which OKRs will be most beneficial. You need to test them rapidly and visualize your outcomes, linking them back to the strategic intent. Even then it sounds data driven and simple; but to innovate you also need to take risks and try some things out, even when you have no idea if they will work or not.

Finally, what are you most looking forward to about SEACON?

Listening to some interesting stories people have to share.

Find out more about SEACON by visiting

Buy tickets from Eventbrite with Philippe's £50 discount code by clicking on this link.

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