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India’s state of innovation through Power Distance Index

Power distance index

Power Distance Index measures willingness of employees to be subservient towards authority, in India the PDI is 77 which is significantly high and compelling enough to construe that positional power trumps above all . This can even be couched as problem of impact of national culture on innovation.

How does it relate to innovation?

  • Positional power in hierarchy has a tendency to mutate into coercive power which dismisses recommendations from juniors while demanding conformity.
  • In the backdrop of above innovation in customer value creation gets forestalled since its entailed to be a reinforcing and engaging process.
  • In a setting where what the ‘boss’ cares about versus what the customer cares about gains precedence then stagnation and dampening of Market Share is imminent

Questions I purport shall actually matter to every Indian employee above wielding power and could aid in becoming immune against the traditional bureaucratic conditioning

  1. How can we offer our customers a bewildering user experience or a great quality product persistently ?
  2. How can I rally critical people across the company around a new pursuit ?
  3. How to create or rethink processes that are in tandem with our objective of customer success ?
  4. Last but not the least, How can we create a agile working environment with value alignment till the last Employee.
  5. Could the problem that appears to be technological might actually be a human or anthropological problem ?

With these profound questions rooted in the problem solving approach we shall take heed to the fact that its the human element, their motivations, their value alignment are central to any organizations success in everything it does .The evidence that such a High PDI shackles innovation in India. No Indian Brand is among top 50 brands of the world. India ranks 52nd in the innovation Index and also ranks among the 10 worst countries for workers according to International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) Global rights Index 2020. This exemplifies that rigid hierarchical structures are detrimental to innovation and growth in brand value.

This write up is in the interest of bringing into light the true causes of faltering innovation.


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