Sticking Notes

Innovation Leadership Accelerator

Transforming skilled practitioners into empowered organizational leaders.


The Innovation Leadership Accelerator (ILA) is a 12-week transformative program designed to support your leap from skilled practitioner to courageous leader and visionary within your organization.

The program is designed to create lasting impact for you and the teams you lead, through the program’s expert coaches and highly curated community — you will be learning side-by-side with other dynamic leaders.

Thank you for your interest in joining us in this journey.

Applications close August 9th.

Innovation Leadership
The Program Pillars

The ILA program is built for those who believe that innovation is not just about launching new products and services. It’s about creating the trust and safe space for inspiration and performance, so we can lead our teams to solve the bigger challenges, together.

We created this program to move past one-off workshops and get people into the deep work of design-driven transformation.

The Program is built on four pillars of leadership.

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Facilitation Mastery
The skill to prepare and drive gatherings of all size and objective.
Self masteryCreated with Sketch.
Know, trust, and manage yourself no matter the challenge.
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Applied Design Thinking
Design & lead innovation workshops that deliver real business value.
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Coaching Mindset
Coach and be coached to unlock potential within yourself & team.

Who Attends and Why?

Because innovation leadership is a cross-functional team sport, the ILA program thrives from its diversity of attendee experience and backgrounds.

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Creative People
The most explosive leadership growth is happening within Product, Design, Research, & Digital -- exciting but also the group that now needs critical guidance and support along your path.
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Sales People
Sales, Customer Success, Marketing, and CX serve as voice of the customer -- learn how to not only participate fully but also drive company-wide innovation initiatives.
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Operations People
R&D projects get implemented & adopted because of the support from HR, Finance, Legal, Ops -- now it's time to lead some innovation wins within your own organizations.
Your Coaches
Jay Melone

Jay Melone is the founder of New Haircut, a product innovation firm and leader in design sprints. He helps organizations fall in love with the products they make and how they make them. His approach makes innovation trusting, real, and achievable.

Jay has 20 years of deep product expertise, helping organizations like Home Depot, Pearson, and Rosetta Stone build amazing products & cultures of work.

Daniel Stillman

Daniel Stillman designs conversations for a living. An independent design facilitator and coach, he works with teams and organizations to frame and sustain productive and collaborative conversations. He’s worked with clients of all shapes and sizes on product, service and organizational innovation.

He hosts The Conversation Factory podcast and is the author of the upcoming book, “How Conversations Work” a handbook for changemakers and innovators.

Guest Mentors
Community is crucial to growth as a leader, that’s why we’re inviting some of our favorite advisers and collaborators to join us for the workshop intensives and to host deep dives during our coaching calls.
Helge Hellberg

Helge Hellberg coaches people in leadership positions or people who desire to get there – women and men who realize their self-responsibility to create exactly the professional and personal fulfillment they want.

Meeta Patel

Meeta Patel is the founder of Design Catalyst. She brings combined design thinking & business thinking expertise to deliver deeply impactful corporate innovation. Meeta was previously the Global VP of Design Thinking at SAP.

Jim Kalbach

Jim Kalbach is a noted author, speaker, and instructor in user experience design, information architecture, and strategy. He is currently Head of Customer Experience at MURAL, the leading online whiteboard. Jim has worked with eBay, Audi, SONY, Elsevier Science, Lexis Nexis, and Citrix.

Bree Groff

Bree Groff is a transformation expert and Principal at SYPartners. She’s on a mission to help companies and people not just embrace change, but get good at it. Bree holds an MS in Organizational Learning and Change from Northwestern University, and is a visiting lecturer at Northwestern and Parsons.

What other leaders say about our workshops
Kai Haley
"Such a fantastic workshop! I learned so much and really walked away with a new mindset"
Kai Haley
Lead of Design Relations and Sprint Master Academy Google
Damon PIeri
"What a phenomenal experience. I'm now completely re-inspired about what's possible!"
Damon Pieri
Director of Product Management at Pearson
Holly Thorsen
“Your session was one of the most valuable I’ve been to in years."
Holly Thorsen
Associate Director at Cooper Professional Education
Program Overview
What you need to know about joining our next cohort.


The next ILA cohort will run from Sept 9 – Dec 6.

Inhouse Training
Opening Intensive Workshop | Sept 19 - Sept 20, NYC
You’ll be initiated into the program with an intensive, deeply practical 2-day workshop in NYC. We’ll explore and practice facilitative leadership, team trust building, innovation frameworks, and more.
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Group Coaching
To make those lessons lasting and contextual to your work you’ll join a series of three group coaching calls to help you process your learnings and ask deeper questions.
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Expert Mentorship
To help you go deep and grow your leadership skills in ways that are intimate and valuable to your journey, we’re thrilled to include a series of virtual mentoring sessions from several expert practitioners as part of the biweeekly coaching series.
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Peer Coaching
In between the facilitated coaching and mentoring sessions, and in order to foster a supportive community within the ILA program, you’ll support one another within your designated peer coaching triads.
Meetup Events
Closing Workshop | Dec 5 - Dec 6, NYC
To consolidate your learnings and help you design your road ahead through hands-on, team-led application, the program will close with another highly immersive 2-day workshop in NYC.


In order to ensure fit with the program and community, everyone interested in joining the program are asked to apply (below).

Applications for this cohort end on Friday, Aug 9.


The cost to join the program is $6,475.

If your application is accepted, you will be invited to hold your spot with a $500 deposit. The deposit will be applied to your total investment in the program. The deposit is fully refundable within 5 days of payment (up through Aug 9, 2019).

Otherwise, your application may not be accepted for this cohort, or you can also choose to decline.


Each cohort welcomes 18 highly curated participants.

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