According to an article in Harvard Business Review on Innovation, "creating a capacity to innovate starts with strategy .... whose job is it to set this strategy? The answer is simple: the most senior leaders of the organization. Innovation cuts across just about every function. Only senior leaders can orchestrate such a complex system. They must take prime responsibility for the processes, structures, talent, and behaviors that shape how an organization searches for innovation opportunities, synthesizes ideas into concepts and product designs, and selects what to do. And yet, Gallup says that "Leaders account for the flat levels of employee engagement, remaining at 52% for the last ten years!"
Robert Kelley in his book The Gold-Collar Worker: Harnessing the Brainpower of the New Work Force first coined the phrase.  He discussed a new generation of workers who use American business' most important resource, brainpower. A quote from the book summary states, "They are a new breed of workers, and they demand a new kind of management. Intelligent, independent, and innovative, these employees are incredibly valuable. They are lawyers, computer programmers, stock analysts and community planners, architects and engineers. They are as distinct from their less skilled white-collar counterparts—bank tellers, bookkeepers, clerks, and other business functionaries—as they are from blue-collar laborers. And they account for over 70 percent of America's workforce! 

Many of our clients employ thousands of these "knowledge workers" and we have develop the "Think-Innovate-Execute" model. As we work with organizations we have found that many issues create obstacles to this model working effectively and productivity and profitability as well as employee retention suffer.
© 2016 World Class HR and Victor Bullara, Certified Executive Master Coach