Show #113: Sparking Change in Organisations
Special Guest: Helen Walton, Founder of Gamevy and Spark the Change
Helen Walton is a creative and marketing manager who has worked on an eclectic range of products – from writing a make-up column in the Daily Mail to a series of books on Agile. She is the co-founder of Gamevy – a tech start-up bringing TV gameshows online.
Gamevy was founded by three colleagues who had previously worked on an education product – it is now the BCS qualification for Agile Practitioners – and the 3 still mark the exams.
WHY INNOVATION FAILED
As part of writing those books, they interviewed a lot of companies and came to some fairly radical conclusions about why innovation so often failed and why people often felt frustrated and fed up by their companies – even when they loved the work itself.
The only way to do something about that is to start your own company – and so Gamevy was born – a company that would be employee owned with no bosses and a radical approach to self-management.
As Gamevy began, we often wrote and spoke about our ideas – we met people who thought it was fascinating and people who hated it. One well-known consultancy called us ‘over-ambitious hippies’.
Spark the Change was born out of a desire to create a community of fellow practitioners – other people who were experimenting, who were ambitious, who were a little bit crazy – and who wanted to challenge the lazy idea of ‘that’ll never work’.
It’s now in its second year and has run in London and Toronto and is due to run in Melbourne as well.
COMPANY CULTURE – DIRECT COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE
Spark brings people from across the business – people who know that company culture can’t be sidelined into ‘HR’s responsibility’ and who appreciate that it’s not something warm and fuzzy but a direct competitive advantage that powers your innovation and responsiveness. It’s 2 days of talks and practical case studies and workshops that provide the skills and tools to make change happen in your organisation. Although it is fun and inspiring – it’s main goal is action, not inspiration. We want to see people and organisations building better businesses and happier workplaces.
Host: Jo Dodds