Accessibility Tools

  • Increase text
  • Decrease text
  • High contrast
  • Negative contrast
  • Add grayscale
  • Remove grayscale
  • Add lightbackground
  • Remove lightbackground
  • Reset

Creating & Leading Cultures of Innovation to Drive the Green Building Agenda


How do we lead in a way that truly drives innovation? As a green building industry we have big plans to push sustainability practices into the future. To be at the forefront of rethinking sustainable design, construction and operational practices. But do we know how to lead systemic, innovative change in this ever-changing world? Can we intentionally build cultures that foster and harness innovative thinking? Can we overcome our fear of failure and celebrate experimentation?

How we lead is at the core of driving sustainable change. Often, we are relying on a story of leadership that’s been written over centuries, and taught to us at home, at school and at work. It defines the way we lead today - which is causing mass employee disengagement across our workforces. It defines who we believe can lead - reinforcing hierarchies, glass ceilings and prejudice. It prevents us from harnessing the wisdom of our people to drive meaningful change, and stops creativity and innovation in its tracks. In order to lead meaningful sustainable change we need to unlearn everything we know about leadership.

In this session we will introduce the 8 qualities of a 21st century leader - as created by people leading modern businesses around the world - and explain why, and how, the key to leading creative businesses is to unlearn what we know about being leaders.

This event qualifies for 1 AIA learning unit.

Learning Objectives

  1. Describe what Leadership for the 21st century looks like and list the 8 qualities that all modern leaders should have
  2. Articulate what we need to unlearn as leaders and how we do it
  3. Explain the keys to tapping into everyone’s potential to be creative and the route to unleashing innovation.
  4. Describe what their leadership team needs to unlearn the most to lead innovative change.


  • Kendall Clifton-Short, BSc / Partner, Within People
  • Laurie Bennett, BA (Hons) Human Sciences / Founding Partner, Within People
  • Jeff Melnyk, BA (Arts and Design) / Founding Partner, Within People