Management and Leadership

Creating High Velocity Organizations

Dates: Jul 17-18, 2014| Oct 30-31, 2014

Certificate Track: Management and Leadership

Participant Ratings


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Some organizations achieve such exceptional levels of performance—time to market, quality, safety, affordability, reliability and responsive, dependability and adaptability, that put their rivals to shame.  Though few in overall number, they exist in high tech and heavy industry, product design and production, manufacturing and services such as health care delivery.

What is the ‘secret’ of their success?  The select few are capable of generating and sustaining such high velocity, broad based, relentless improvement and innovation, that they achieve unparalleled levels of excellence.  Creating High Velocity Organizations will introduce the fundamental principles by which such acceleration occurs, give examples of those principles in practice, and give participants an opportunity to test how those principles can be applied and translated to their own work.

Learning Experience

Creating High Velocity Organizations employs several teaching techniques—presentations, case discussions, video dramatizations, and an in-class simulation —emphasizing a participatory style to maximize the opportunities for “learning by doing”. The program material is organized into thematic modules designed around the four key principles of building the discovery capability in an organization—smart work design, creative problem solving, continuous knowledge sharing, and developing of discovery skills among employees. Each module consists of several sessions, which demonstrate, first, the positive impact through successful application of those key principles, and then provides examples of negative results when those principles were clearly needed but not applied. Each session is punctuated by facilitated small-group exercises, in which participants can actively apply the ideas and examples offered in class to their own specific, real-life situations.

Assignment Required Before Arrival
This program will provide multiple opportunities for participants to explore their own processes.  Participants should come prepared to work on an important challenge in their organization.

Join the MySloanExecEd Community Group for this program to network with past, present, and future participants.

This program will enable participants to:

  • Create an organization where work is done by harnessing the best-known approaches available and signaling the need for new knowledge.
  • Solve problems as they arise and to develop new understanding that prevents the problems from recurring.
  • Multiply the impact of local discoveries by making them useful systemically throughout the organization.
  • Lead an organization where discovery is encouraged, supported, and promoted at all times. 

The MIT Edge

Traditional business-school curricula tend to focus on teaching decision-making skills as a way to success. However, many companies today—especially those in relatively new industries—find themselves lacking the information or the experience needed to make the decisions that could determine their future. That is where the leaders' ability not only to think, but also to behave like innovators, becomes vital to the success of the organization. Known for its commitment to innovation, with this program MIT Sloan offers a rare opportunity for participants to learn how to channel their curiosity into innovators' behavior.

Creating High Velocity Organizations is designed for managers with responsibility for core products, services, or mission-critical processes; subject matter experts on process excellence; and senior leadership, whose understanding and support are vital in developing the discovery capacity within the organization.

Another group that can benefit greatly from participation in this program are entrepreneurs in any industry, but especially in new and emerging fields, where there is little or no established knowledge base required for successful decision-driven leadership.

To get the highest impact of this program, we recommend that participants attend in groups comprising managers and executives from the organization. Please inquire about group discounts for teams of three or more.

07:45 AM - 08:30 AMRegistration and Continental Breakfast
08:30 AM - 09:00 AMIntroduction and Program Objectives
09:00 AM - 10:30 AMHow High Velocity Organizations Systematize Improvement, Innovation, and Invention to Discover Their Way to Greatness
10:30 AM - 11:30 AMFailure Modes to Avoid (video case)
11:30 AM - 12:30 PMLunch & Reflection: Applying lessons learned so far to your business critical process (Round 1)
12:30 PM - 03:30 PMPrinciples for System Design and Improvement (simulation)
03:30 PM - 04:30 PMDeveloping High Velocity Skills in Others; "Table top" Redesign: Applying lessons learned to your business critical processes (Round 2)
05:00 PM - 06:00 PMReception
07:45 AM - 08:30 AMContinental Breakfast
08:30 AM - 12:00 PMPerspectives on Organizations; Psychology of Human Behavior and Decision Making
12:00 PM - 01:00 PMLunch & Reflection: Applying lessons learned so far to your business critical processes (Round 3)
01:00 PM - 03:30 PMCreating High Velocity Innovation on a Mega Scale
03:30 PM - 04:30 PMReflections & Report Out: Creating High Velocity in Your Own Organization
  • Title: High Velocity Organizations Webinar with Steven Spear

    Description: This is the recording of the live webinar with Steven Spear that occured on March 29, 2012. How do some organizations achieve exceptional levels of sustained improvement and performance that put their rivals to shame? This 60-minute webinar will prove that sustainable competitive advantages can be won by creating the capacity within an organization to improve and innovate faster and more consistently. MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Steven Spear demonstrates what high velocity improvement and innovation look like in practiceand how your organization can apply behavioral strategies to achieve it. Spear introduces the secrets of systemizing innovation so that improvement and acceleration can become second nature to your organization. Learn more about his related 2-day program Creating High Velocity Organizations (



    The insights received from attending this course are invaluable. I have come to a better understanding of the following 1. The fundamentals of achieving Fast Growth in my business. -Starting from where I am and working on the Climb Rate. 2. Organizing things in a manner that Tasks are made to become simple and are segmented and members of the Team are made to carry out different Tasks repeatedly, leading to Specialization and better Efficiency for the Organization. 3. Identifying Problems -See Solving the identified problems- Solve Sharing the solutions- Share Also ensuring I build the culture of See, Solve, Share in the Leadership Team. 4.Understanding that people make up Organizations and that the Tasks must be organized with the capability of these people in mind. This has further prepared me to take the necessary Giant Leap in my Business.

    Excellent program all around. I was particularly impressed by Roberto Fernandez (Psychology of getting things done). I believe that Psychology in the workplace is not well represented but plays a major role in the success of any industry.

    The instructors are great and I enjoyed the learning community very much. Especially, the instructors asked us to move around to different tables to get talk to other students than the ones at the same table. This helps us to network and get to know more different perspective.

    The instructors presented the material very well. Both Steve and Erik used group discussions and mini-projects as methods that allow participants to better absorb the material. Time management and course structure made the time fly by! The group discussions gave people a chance to discuss the information and allowed enough separation from the lecture to refocus and refresh for the next block of lecture material. They (Steve and Erik) constructed a framework where participants can walk away with a broad, executable understanding of the topic. If someone needed a deeper comprehension of the material presented, all they need to do is find the research papers and read. Steve Spear sent the attendees a follow-up letter giving us an outline of topics discussed. He also included chapters from his book to take note of for implementation and case study purposes. Little things like this separate great from good. Great job to the CHVO teaching team!

    This is the first course I have ever taken where I felt that 100% of the information delivered was entirely pertinent and immediately applicable. This course is a must for anyone striving to create momentum and improve results in their organization.