A New Disruptive Paradigm

platform-disruption-wave-book-review

Let’s face it, running a business in today’s world is a formidable endeavor: change and disruption have become the new norm. In an effort to keep up, innovation is at the top of every executive’s priority list and new innovation methodologies, training and strategies are available every day. But is all the hype really helpful while Western businesses and policy-makers are working under an outdated paradigm?

In his new book, Platform Disruption Wave, Haydn Shaughnessy says that modern enterprises need to explore a new way of doing business—one that embraces continuous improvement, self-learning, horizontal structures and diversified ecosystems, rather than individual achievement and the hero’s journey. If they fail to do so, the U.S. and Europe will start to see a major power shift to the East, and not in 20 years time—this process has already begun and the effects are at our doorstep.

Read the full Blog about A New Disruptive Paradigm at Innovation Management.

Avoid Innovation Paralysis – Why all Companies Can and Must Embrace Change

avoid-innovation-paralysis-embrace-change

Someone once told me this: “Innovation is like an apparition of the Virgin Mary: one person saw her, but everyone talks about it.” Although funny, the quote aptly captures an attitude towards innovation that exists in many companies today. Innovation – and the skills that enable it – are sometimes considered as mystical gifts, preserved for the chosen few. In other cases, innovation is feared, because it involves unregulated processes, risk taking and investments with unpredictable outcomes.

Innovation. The word is tossed around carelessly, and is repeatedly illustrated with the same few business cases. Some of the usual suspects include autonomous transport (Google, Tesla), wearable tech (Apple) and of course … the sharing economy (Uber, Airbnb).

Innovation is a business discipline

A lot of business leaders know they want innovation, yet they struggle to define what it actually means to them. Simply put, innovation is about making changes that add business value, in terms of either revenue growth or increased operational efficiency. This value can be created in four ways:

  1. introducing new products;
  2. optimizing operational processes;

Read the full blog about Avoid Innovation Paralysis – Why all Companies Can and Must Embrace Change at Innovation Management.

 

Read such more articles based on Organization and Culture, Strategy, Serialized Books etc. at our Library Section at Innovation Management.

The Dynamics of Change and Fear

1717

Carly Fiorina, Former CEO at HP, talks about the dynamics of change and fear. She notes that entrepreneurship is about risk-taking, and this is always associated with trying something new. Fiorina concludes by asserting that change involves gathering enough energy and force to overcome the power of status quo.

So what do I know about change? First thing I know is that everybody is afraid of something. Everybody is afraid of something. All of you are afraid of something. All of us are afraid of something. What distinguishes people who are successful in their life from those who are not is what do you do with your fear.

The essence of business is risk taking. Taking a risk is all about trying something new. And yet as people go on in their lives, they become afraid of trying something new. And so change is always resisted, always. Because people are afraid, even if what they have is not satisfying to them, a lot of people are afraid to venture into the unknown.

Read full Article about The Dynamics of Change and Fear at Innovation Management.

Where Do Good Ideas Go to Die?: The Problem with Your Old Idea Program

Our team found an example of one of the earliest workplace suggestion boxes the other day from 1721 when a shogun, Yoshimuni Tokugawa, wrote to his citizens “Make your idea known . . . Rewards are given for ideas that are accepted.’” This means that the concept of crowdsourcing ideas that can improve a city, workplace, or world has been around for quite some time.

Well, at IdeaScale we’ve been discussing some of the old systems that pre-date idea software and why they didn’t work. We’re talking about cocktail napkins, excel spreadsheets, innovation programs that were run entirely on a single innovation@ email address. The reason that most people are looking for a innovation management software usually corresponds with one of these three shortcomings of the old program.

  • It wasn’t scalable. Usually the volume of suggestions to be evaluated is too much for a single person or initiative.
  • It wasn’t transparent. Transparency is important to these programs for a number of reasons – finding new resources, recognizing talent, identifying bottlenecks, and more.

Here is not the end..to view full blog about Where Do good Ideas Go to Die? The Problem with your Old Idea Program visit Innovation Management. Also have a look on our latest articles and our various programs of Online Learning Innovation Programs and Innovation Process.

6 Ways to Avoid Employee Burnout and Foster Innovation

According to a recent Gallup poll, around 31% of U.S. employees were engaged in 2014. Why are employees less engaged? Some of the blame is due to burnout at work. This burnout, characterized by severe mental and physical exhaustion, is leading to a lack of interest, reduced employee engagement and less work being accomplished.

1. Think out of the box…

Managers should specially pay attention to the personal issues of the employees. If the working environment is up to the mark and helping, then the issue might be associated with the personal life.

2. Open communication is the key to success

It is the art of communication that would make the most intimidating tasks easy and achievable. Every manager wants his employee to be honest and straightforward and to achieve desired results.

3. Vigilant promotions and hiring

Burnout starts when a wrong person is hired or promoted. The managers and HR department should not only give priority to skill….s and expertise but the personality attributes should also be assessed in the best possible manner.

Here is not the end…..

To read full article article about 6 Ways to Avoid Employee Burnout and Foster Innovation please visit Innovation Management.

Also read about our Innovation process and Online Learning nnovation Programs.

Three Megatrends that will Affect Everybody’s Business

The future is hard to predict and a lot of “experts” regularly get it wrong. However, there are some facts so important and trends so inevitable that leaders would be ill-advised to ignore and not try to anticipate. Here are three of many future megatrends that will not necessarily determine what will happen, but will most likely have a big impact on everybody’s business in the coming years to decades.

Changing demography

This is one of the only indicators that cannot lie about the future: Tomorrow, we will all be older than we are today!

Some of the major changing tides of demography may have important political, economic, and potentially military consequences. For example: what are the implications of Russia having a life expectancy of 59 versus 61 for Bangladesh?

Infrastructure will need to be redone and rethought, creating a lot of openings for building and technology innovators.”

Looking to another part of the world, a number of analysts are betting that China, the most populous country on the planet, will take up some demographic slack and be the growth engine of the future. I wouldn’t be so sure about that. While today’s generation may be relatively prosperous, the country’s one child policy is beginning to take its toll; smaller numbers of the next generation will have to support a much more massive pool of aging citizens just like in the so-called developed countries.

Here is not the end. Read full Blog here>> Three Megatrends that will Affect Everybody’s Business

Innovation Management provides Online learning innovation programs , Innovation Process through which you can learn many things.

Follow the Crowd or Create the Marketplace

It’s follow my leader time for the world’s stock markets. Concerns over the state of the Chinese economy have seen markets plunge into freefall, only for some to bounce upwards again a few hours later. At the time of writing, markets are still in flux with analysts divided on the eventual outcome.

The impartial observer may wonder why the sudden panic, why when statistics and warning signs have pointed to areas of concern for a period of time the markets have suddenly moved from apparent inactivity to violent action. This is not a new phenomenon, nor is it confined to the world stock markets. In fact, the history of business could easily be written in terms of a giant game of follow my leader.

What’s right for you?

The fact is that like so much else in life different ideas work for different organisations. And whilst the principal may be sound and may be entirely appropriate at a headline level, it is how leaders shape the basic idea to work for their organisation that makes the difference between boosting business success and yet another change failure.

Innovation is not a one size fits all solution.

The innovation roadmap

One of the best ways to make sure that you are creating a solution which is right for your organisation, rather than simply a copy of someone else’s idea, is to take time at the outset to really understand where your business currently stands. This innovation cultural assessment should employ a mix of qualitative and quantitative assessments which are designed to enable the leadership to not only understand the current level of innovation maturity but also to gauge areas such as employee engagement.

To read full blog about Follow the Crowd or Create the Marketplace visit Innovation Management

Intuition and Deliberation for Better Decision-Making

We live in an age of change and uncertainty. For businesses, this means that only the most versatile survive —innovate or die. Simply adapting to the digital age is not enough: company survival requires explorative business strategies, to find new opportunities to improve and renew products and services. To attain explorative success you need a combination of both deliberate thinking and intuitive thinking. This article explores how you can balance the two.

In this article we bridge theory and practice on organizing imagination and innovation by extracting key implications and offering new insights to innovation practitioners. This article builds on The Role of Intuition and Deliberation for Exploitation and Exploration Success by Kurt Matzler, Borislav Uzelac, and Florian Bauer and explains why intuition and deliberation jointly make for better decision-making.

Rapid developments in computing have led to an ever-increasing digitization, causing unprecedented rates of change to society. We live in an age of change and uncertainty.

The Role of Intuition and Deliberation for Exploitation and Exploration Success, examines the link between explorative and exploitative business strategies on the one hand, and intuitive and analytical deliberate thinking on the other. Its authors, Kurt Matzler, Borislav Uzelac and Florian Bauer find that:

  • Intuitive and deliberate thinking are not two opposing poles of a continuum, but two intertwined modes of information processing.
  • Both intuitive and deliberate decision-making are positively associated with explorative success.

To read full article about Intuition and Deliberation for Better Decision-Making visit Innovation Management.

25 Steps to Jump-Start your Innovation Journey

We’ve covered some essential ground to help you prepare your innovation journey, and now it’s time to put these concepts into action. The innovation formula addresses the very specific tasks that have to be accomplished for innovation to emerge from your organization not only as a matter of luck or at random, but through a concentrated effort that results in sustained innovation performance. Here you will find the Taking Action steps along with 25 additional suggestions that we hope will help you to think and plan creatively and productively about how to make innovation a reality in your organization.

  • Change and complexity, the external world that seems to be different nearly every day.
  • Risk and the need to come up with great ideas, and to balance potential rewards with the risks that come with striving to attain them.
  • Speed, the imperative to go fast because the external world isn’t waiting around for you or your organization, and your competitors would be happy to seize your market share and make it their own.
  • Engagement, because it takes the observations, expertise, and insights of many people working effectively together to come up with great ideas, and then transform them into working solutions to problems that your customers really do want to solve.
  • Leadership, because no innovations happen without courage, commitment, support, and often resources, and these are elements that you, as leader, must provide in highly visible and emphatic ways.
  • And then tools, which can make the path much easier and faster even if they’re not fancy.

Your Innovation Team

This will be a dynamic group of people from many different backgrounds who have vital roles to play in support of your firm’s innovation management objectives. Without knowing the specifics of your situation, your organization, and the unique challenges you’re facing, please consider the following as a suggestion and a general set of jobs or roles that are useful to the successful pursuit of innovation in a small organization, that is, your company.

Complexity and Change: The Strategy Manager

We began the discussion of your innovation needs, requirements, and opportunities by exploring the driving forces of change that are shaping the world of tomorrow. We talked about technology, science, culture, the population, and climate change, and these broad trends as well as some that may be specific to your industry or your organization present a continually changing panorama that you need to be paying close attention to, for there’s no telling when an external change will lead to a specific requirement or challenge for you.

Getting Started

As you recruit the best people you can find to participate on your innovation team, and work to engage with them as your teammates, colleagues, and fellow travelers on the innovation journey, one of the most important things to remember is that innovation is driven by divergent thinking, which we also know as lateral thinking, and as a leader you must specifically encourage, promote, and indeed insist on the necessity of divergent thinking across all aspects of the work, from the design and management of your innovation efforts, to the conduct of the many ongoing innovation projects.

Read more>>

Elements of The Innovation Formula

In the first chapter of The Innovation Formula for small business leaders and entrepreneurs, Langdon Morris explained the importance of questions and maps that describe competition, change, the future, innovation and strategy that are intended to help you understand the significant forces that are shaping business today, and to harness the ones that are already shaping tomorrow. In the second chapter, we look at a third core element that this book is organized around, which is the innovation formula.

Yes, we do believe that there is a formula for success at innovation, and we have found over the years that it doesn’t matter whether you’re running a garage, a sandwich shop, or a multinational auto manufacturer, success in each case relies on your performance in the same five areas. Whether you’re the CEO of GM or the chief cook and bottle washer, you have to think about the same problems, study, learn, research, experiment, engage in some risk, and manage it closely. How you do these, of course, is entirely different depending on the size of your business, but nevertheless the actual elements seem to be consistent across all businesses.

The formula consists of the six major topics: complexity and change, risk, speed, engagement, leadership, and tools. Here is a quick summary of the key ideas and the reasoning that you’ll find throughout the rest of this serialized book.

Complexity and Change

The external environment is an unyielding and unceasing source of change, and your organization must adapt to it if it’s going to survive. Hence, complexity and change literally define the context in which innovation and its close cousin, strategy, are relevant. It is to external change that drives market needs and preferences, and hence it is a critical role of leadership to be attuned to the rhythm, character, and specifics of what is happening out there in the increasingly wild world. The other critical role is of course leading the process of responding to those changes.

Risk

When we understand what’s happening in the external environment we can organize the pursuit of innovation, correctly targeted, so that we produce the right innovations to meet current and future market needs. But if only it were so easy. In fact, it is intellectually and operationally challenging to figure out what’s the right thing to do, the right products and services to create.

Furthermore, having a clear vision of the future products and services is not at all the same as actually having them in hand.

Hence, there is a double risk. First, anticipating future needs correctly is by no means an easy task. What if, for example, you see clearly what the needs of the future will be, but in the end it turns out that you’re wrong? This, of course, is the story of countless failed companies, which aimed for a target in the future market that the actual market itself never selected?

Second, even if you do get it right, there’s still the many problems associated with developing the right products and services to meet the anticipated needs. Can your designs and plans actually work? Can you complete the development work in a timely way? Does your organization have the internal talent and the right external partners to master the many challenges?

Risk, then, is inherent in the innovation management problem, and it is inescapable. So the right amount of risk is essentially the least possible risk.

“Least possible,” however, is trickier than it may at first sound. Least, after all, is really none, but of course the point of competition and change and all that is that taking no risk means making no innovations at all, which is actually a very risky approach, because it leaves you entirely vulnerable to those very changes. Consequently, “least possible” really means the least you can take on while still remaining viable, but even knowing exactly how much risk that is, is actually unknowable.

And so the problem now becomes one of information, because you probably don’t know what innovations your competitors are working on, nor everything about the new and innovative technologies that may be coming, etc., etc., which means that while you cannot afford to do nothing, to just wait for the future to bury your business, you are obliged to act, compelled to act, to act proactively yet with incomplete information.

This is the character of the risks you must take. Taking them well, thoughtfully, strategically is what’s necessary. Achieving this, navigating through this difficult but fascinating landscape will take some thought and a lot of effort.

Speed

Despite the many risks you plunge ahead, thoughtfully, to create your organization’s future. You are now engaged in the depths of the innovation process itself.

That process is not such an easy one, as it must be thorough and thoughtful, of course, but above all it must be fast. Again, the premise here is that your information is incomplete, and you just don’t know how fast your competitors will move, nor do you know exactly how the market will respond to their new ideas, nor to yours. So the best way to deal with the compounding of uncertainty is to go fast, to learn fast, to learn what works and what doesn’t work through techniques such as agile sprints, rapid prototyping, minimum viable products, a-b testing, and related techniques (which we will discuss in chapter 5). We express this in the innovation formula as speed, and of course there is a lot of value in getting solid results fast, faster than your competitors.

Engagement

The next element of the formula relates to the culture of your organization, for you and your partner are the ones who are going to develop ideas, figure out which ones are great, and turn them into something useful, test them, and bring the very best to the market.

Theoretically, you could find the smartest person in your organization, set them to the innovation task, and achieve good or even great results. Practically, though, the issues that have to be dealt with are probably deeper and broader than a single individual can master, because today’s innovation projects integrate knowledge across multiple domains, each of which itself runs quite deep.

Hence, we know that innovation is not an individual activity, but a team sport. The optimal innovation process is one in which your organization is engaged, one in which all of the strengths, thoughts, and talents of everyone, and also those of the broader ecosystem in which your organization participates, are fully engaged.

Leadership

It’s also true of organizations that deep and thorough engagement comes about only when there is superbly focused leadership. We know that innovation can happen in organizations where the risks are understood, and where the ambiguities and uncertainties that are inherent in the process are known and acknowledged, and where there is willingness to engage in the necessary levels of risk taking.

We also know that in organizations where people are punished for making intelligent mistakes, for thoughtfully trying new things that fail, for thinking about how to do things better, and differently, the spirit of innovation is swiftly and decisively stifled. Hence, leaders must embrace and promote the critical elements which enable an innovation culture to emerge, or it will not emerge.

Tools

The last clause of the formula concerns the tools and methods that we use to manage the entire innovation effort. All other things being equal, better tools and methods are likely to support better results, and while this does not necessarily mean that you have to invest a lot of money in new technology, you do need to think through carefully and invest appropriately in methods, processes, and organizational structures that enable and promote innovation efforts, and which set the tone and context in which innovation can thrive.

So these are the six elements in the innovation formula; here they are expressed in pseudo math:

(Complexity and Change) > Innovation
Innovation = f (Risk) (Speed) (Engagement) (Leadership) + (Tools)

Or in English, Complexity and change means that Innovation is essential for survival. Achieving innovation a function of Risk, times Speed, times Engagement, times Leadership, plus Tools.

In previous books, I and co-authors have examined many aspects and facets of this formula in considerable detail, and in our work with enterprises large and small all around the world we’ve worked with them to implement it, to make innovation real, important, and effective for their organizations.

And as I mentioned above, we believe that exactly the same innovation formula works for GM and Toyota as it does for the local restaurant and the auto garage, and that it will probably work for your small business too. So while nearly all of the nuances and details or its implementation will certainly be different from the Fortune 500 firm to the local business in Peru, China, New York, or Auckland, we are convinced based on many years of practice that the actual thinking process, that the critical questions and the guiding maps, will be nearly the same.

This book is the fifth one in a series that explores all of this in a lot detail. It was preceded by Permanent Innovation, The Innovation Master Plan, The Chief Innovation Officer, and Agile Innovation, and you may be interested in checking these out if you’re the sort of person who likes to absorb a lot of detail and wants to study the deeper reasoning.

If you’re not the person who wants to read a lot of detail, then hopefully the concise contents of this book will help you to understand the challenges, and design the right responses.

In each subsequent chapter we will explore the formula one element at a time, beginning with a quick look at the broader context of complexity and change, followed by the remaining five elements, with a particular focus on what they mean for you, the small and medium sized business leader or entrepreneur, and also with focus on action and implementation.

This is not intended as theoretical exercise, but rather an entirely practical guidebook. We hope it helps you to arrive at the right destination, namely an innovative and thereby successful firm.