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Personal Growth Hacking: Should We Growth Hack Leadership Itself?

January 29, 2018
Stuart Hardy Monthly Insights

This month, Stuart Hardy Director of Executive Education reframes the role of growth hacking as a tool for constant optimisation of creative leadership and business success.

As one tech guru put it “a Growth Hacker is a person whose true north is growth.” This to me seems an admirable goal for any leader in today’s ever-changing new industrial revolution. We surely need growth in new sources of value, growth in innovation, and personal growth in talent to fuel this new paradigm.

By way of an overview, growth hacking is a new form of marketing that penetrates every aspect of the business, locating and enabling multiple opportunities across all silos and channels. Traditional inside-out marketing involves a pipeline style of business, where prospects are converted into leads, whereas growth hacking seeks to find pockets of prospects or influencers in an ecosystem based on specialisms. This more personalized approach typically drives a higher close-rate and more revenue.

If one now considers the concept of marketing oneself, or ‘personal branding’, then one could imagine how a growth-hacking ‘personal’ approach could be more agile in today’s world of perpetual-beta, uncertainty and ambiguity. In order to ‘sell’ yourself, you first have to know how to package and market yourself, and what your value-proposition is to those that you lead. To do this, you have to define what ‘you’ is, and what your constituent parts are.

High-performance creative leaders have an acute sense of their personal value and how to apply it. At the Berlin School, we employ the Business Model Canvas as a tool to explore an individual’s ‘personal business-model’, so that they can more effectively optimize their approach for the demands and context in which they work. This is a form of growth hacking, as it provides the necessary granularity for personal optimization and growth.

Great creative leaders are tough on themselves, and relentlessly examine their attributes from a helicopter view. This enables proactive choice-making in a continuous and agile stream, adapting to change and transformation.

This form of human growth-hacking, combined with high levels of emotional intelligence will be a critical enabler for dynamic leaders driving innovation and disruption for both clients and consumers.

About the author

Stuart Hardy describes himself as a ‘Human Engineer’, and is Director of Executive Education at the Berlin School. His primary focus is to ensure that the latest thinking and innovations from high performance business are integrated into Berlin School’s creative development programs. Writing from his home in Staffordshire or during a twelve-hour flight to Brazil, Stuart brings us his monthly reflections on leading teams, practicing innovation, and generating value in the changing world of creative business.

Julie Hough

Content Strategist
Berlin School of Creative Leadership
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