This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Find out more here


To discuss how you and your organisation can get more involved with The Work Foundation, please contact us.

Call 020 7976 3575 or email


The Work Foundation and CIPD Conference: Your role in becoming a strategic partner for innovation and growth

The Work Foundation and CIPD Conference: Your role in becoming a strategic partner for innovation and growth

Monday, 24 March 2014
12:00 - 17:00
Milton Keynes Conference Centre (MKCC), Strudwick Drive, Oldbrook, Buckinghamshire MK6 2TG


• Professor Stephen Bevan, Director of The Centre for Workforce Effectiveness, The Work Foundation
• Professor Chris May, Lancaster University

The conference:

If our people are to be a decisive source of competitive advantage and a driver of organisational success we need to do much more to harness their innate capacity to innovate and to be creative. In a post-recessionary environment this is not always an easy task. Job insecurity, lower trust, more intense work environments, tougher performance management regimes and a lock-down on pay have all made it more difficult to extract discretionary effort from employees. Yet, if UK plc is to achieve ‘escape velocity’ from the downturn it will be our ability to build on the innovative capacity of our workforce which will be critical.

Professor Bevan opened the session
Stephen Bevan looked a range of people-related domains which are associated with innovation & high performance. These include culture, diversity & inclusion, rewards, job design, team working and leadership. He presented the results of a pre-conference questionnaire on ‘Cultures of Innovation’ which delegates were invited to complete upon sign up.

Questions that were considered:
• If your organisation could only do three things to improve the innovate capacity of your workforce, what would they be?
• In what tangible (measureable?) ways would your organisation benefit from improvements in innovative capacity?
• What are the main cultural barriers to change that you would have to overcome?

Professor Chris May explored the way we can understand innovation and its supporting practices, behaviours and enablers. The key questions of this session were:

• What are the key skills and competences for generating and/or allowing innovation?
• Can you train someone to be innovative; or is it a talent? Professor May shared an approach to answering this issue via a PhD researcher programme focussed on innovation.
• In the final element Professor May will draw focussed conclusions from the session in the context of the wider development work he is doing to establish some key action points for organisations and managers seeking to facilitate and support innovative practices and solutions.


If you would like to see the post summary and tips on the workshop please click here


Back to forthcoming events