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The Stories of Creative Leadership: John R. Bell

Updated: Jan 23, 2023

By Tony Vengrove


Welcome to Episode 3 of The Stories of Creative Leadership. Our latest conversation features John R. Bell, retired CEO, management consultant, and author of Do Less Better: The Power of Strategic Sacrifice in a Complex World.

As you’ll hear in the interview, John is a leader that truly embraces creativity and innovation. Having served at the helm of a large corporation, John has many lessons to share regarding his creative leadership journey and what principles served him well.

We also talk about his new book Do Less Better, which is packed with relevant insights on strategy, innovation, and leadership. I devoured it and predict it will be on this year’s top-10 business book list. I highly recommend it!

Highlights from the interview include:

  1. Why “Creativity is the last great bargain in business.”

  2. How John honed his creative leadership skills and what you should do more of and less of starting today.

  3. How doing less better brings agility, foresight, adaptability, and resilience.

  4. How doing less better enables you to compete with larger organizations with bigger budgets.

  5. “One of the most important things a CEO can do is establish an environment that will not force him or her to compromise their strategic principles.”

  6. “Creativity without strategy is like spitting in the wind.”

John hit a home-run during our 7 C’s of Creative Leadership lightening round–you won’t want to miss it. He offered a kind endorsement of our creative framework: “I’ve got to tell you, I love the concept of those 7 C’s–it’s a terrific checklist for anyone who wants to break through with creativity.”

Listen to the interview with John Bell here.

We have a lot more exciting guests coming down the pike. Be sure to bookmark our new series landing page so that you never miss an episode!

Founder, Miles Finch Innovation LLC

Miles Finch Innovation helps companies navigate the messy territory of corporate innovation. We’re strategic thinking partners who can help you get unstuck and identify creative solutions to your toughest challenges. We also love to train and speak on the subject of Creative Leadership. Email us or call us at 860-799-7505 to learn how we can help you you unlock the creative potential of your employees.

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