Coach Your Incumbent Execs to Survive Innovation

Organizations experience change at every step of their journey. In a roundtable discussion hosted by our partners at the ILO Institute, one senior executive suggested that the right way to deal with market changes is to anticipate and prepare for the inevitable surprises.

U+, in partnership with the ILO Institute, is excited to bring you highlights from ILO’s Weekly Virtual Gatherings. This week, we heard from a top insurance executive about the value of coaching teams ahead of major organizational changes.

Insight prepared and provided by Peter Temes and Christian Hamilton of ILO.

We've spent some time talking with the head of transformation for a global insurance company. He’s helping this 17,000-employee organization change the way it faces its key markets.

From his personal experience living through two high-stakes mergers, he’s learned that coaching in advance of big changes is vital.

"If you look at what happens when you change the way we go to market, you see a lot of mid and senior-level management folks, good people who have had success and are likely to want to avoid risk, just get totally blindsided by how their work will change day to day. They don’t have the experience to anticipate how they'll be treated differently by others in the organization, and what it will all feel like. Good people will be easy pickings for competitors and headhunters when that happens, and others will just put their heads down and stop contributing.

"But if they know what it’s going to feel like, if they have a sense that once the current steps for planning and selling are pulled away and new things get tried out, there will be a path that does indeed lead to success, they'll be much better off. When the changes unfold as a series of surprises, you create a lot for people you want to retain and keep engaged. You have to help them anticipate the surprises. The organization will be much better off. These people have to know where that path is, what that path is, how people who are good at adapting in that situation think and feel and act."

The U+ Method can efficiently and effectively lead the development, implementation, and improvement of innovations in any sector. To date, we have used this method to bring 90+ products to market, creating over $1 billion in value for Fortune 1000 companies. Check out U+ success stories here.

Get 20 minutes with Sean, the Managing Partner of U+ Americas, to learn more about how U+ can help your company innovate successfully.

Launched in 2005, ILO is a membership organization for large companies, government agencies and not-for-profits, bringing senior executives leading innovation together for knowledge sharing and community building. ILO has completed more than 300 best-practice research reports, focusing on emerging challenges and opportunities. To learn more about ILO, membership benefits, and how to join, visit

Check back next week as we’ll be releasing new insights from weekly events with leading innovators from across the globe.

Let's talk about Coach Your Incumbent Execs to Survive Innovation