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Small Businesses can Overcome Financial Woes Through Innovation

November 1st, 2018|

Starting up a small business can be rough. Even if you possess near-infinite entrepreneurial spirit, chances are that you’ll run into some roadblocks along the way. Whether these obstacles are based in logistics of strategy and implementation of your business model, or even issues with the very products and services you offer, most of these problems can be solved with financial influx.

5 Things that Are Slowing Most SMBs Down

October 16th, 2018|

On your path towards success, your business will encounter numerous bumps, however, some of these problems tend to hold your business more than others. Most of the time, the entrepreneurs behind these SMBs are first-timers, which means that they lack the necessary experience to recognize the gravity of the situation in the given moment.

Taxis vs. Uber: A Perfect Example of Resistance to Change

October 14th, 2014|

In cities all over the world an ugly war is being fought by “traditional” taxi companies against a new form of competition from Uber and other ride-sharing services. This article points out three things traditional taxi companies have in common with businesses of the past.

Paving the Path for Innovation Purpose and Closing the Alignment Gap

October 6th, 2014|

Defining the organizational purpose and promoting organizational alignment are two key factors for creating a culture that supports innovation. In this series of articles focused on Innovation Culture, we are going to share insights and cases of organizations that implemented innovation programs (and less structured initiatives) with the involvement of a wide range of managers and employees.

The One Word Answer to Why Innovation Fails

September 22nd, 2014|

Innovation sounds easy, but it is not. The majority of enterprises report dissatisfaction with innovation performance. Three quarters of the CEOs of multinationals view external collaborative innovation as vitally important, but only half do it, and those only rate themselves as doing it ‘moderately well’. And remember - two thirds of organizational ‘change’ efforts fail. In case you are now asking yourself, why are these odds that low – we have a straightforward answer. It’s just one word.

It Works! The ‘Results Equation’

September 15th, 2014|

We are moved by goals. The resolve to reach the finish line pushes us forward: at work, in life. Why then do we keep idea management initiatives alive when it’s not clear what results they deliver (if any)? And how often have we yearned for a formula that definitely makes it all happen?

How to Build a High Performance Innovation Culture

August 13th, 2014|

Innovation is the mantra in leadership these days. Isolated innovation efforts abound. Still, most likely, your innovation program will fail, as many do. Not because you’re incapable of good innovation or because you’re lacking a mandate, but because you’ve probably overlooked some fundamental pre-requisites. Don’t worry, we have good news.

Mourning the Dead: Why You Should Have a Funeral after Killing Your Product

April 28th, 2014|

Pulling the plug on an in-flight project is hard. No one wants to be the person calling it quits, offending team members and admitting defeat. It is this mentality, however, that ends up sucking the life out of resources and budgets and setting the organization up for continued failure because the process is broken. How can you ensure only the right projects survive, wrong ones are killed early and lessons are celebrated after an appropriate mourning period? It’s going to take courage.

The Role of Top-Down Management in Enterprise Innovation

February 10th, 2014|

Running a successful enterprise innovation management program can be a challenging mission. Multiple factors have to be considered,each of which affect potential outcomes. One key aspect is the level of support an innovation program receives from an organization’s management. Connecting the needs of top-down management with the strategy and architecture of an innovation program will always lead to greater levels of success.

The Value of De-Risking Lies In the Process

January 14th, 2014|

Mitigating the high failure rate associated with entrepreneurial endeavour is something that concerns investors as well as potential entrepreneurs - “do I risk myself?” is a lurking question many ask of themselves or the person putting money on the table.

Brag about Your Failures

December 3rd, 2013|

Many organizations in both the public and private sectors suffer from a corporate culture which is risk averse and fearful of failure. People are reluctant to try new things or even to suggest innovations. They remember old stories about colleagues being punished for experiments that failed. They have learnt that it is safest to keep a low profile and focus on standard operating procedures. Mean while the executive committee is desperately trying to think of ways to make the outfit more agile and innovative.

Top Innovation Secrets

October 21st, 2013|

Being successful at innovation is a skill. One that takes time, patience, strategic intelligence and amongst other things, funding. Many organisations succeed only after they have experienced embarrassing failures and learnt some tough lessons in the process. How do others succeed with their innovation efforts? What is the secret? In this article we use the inspiring philosophy of Steve Jobs as stimulus and ask innovation managers about their “secret sauce for innovation success”. Learning from others reduce risk because resurrecting the organisational “innovation corpse” is not an action anyone should be tasked with.

Disappointed By Innovation Results? It’s The Culture!

September 9th, 2013|

Though companies invest into innovation they like results less and less. There seems to be a glass ceiling for driving innovation, which neither new tools and processes nor innovation consultants seem to crack. It is time to face the elephant in the room: company culture and its impact on innovation performance. Top management needs to learn deal with it. Then company culture will become a driver of innovation rather than getting in the way.

Being the Chief Innovation Officer. Amy Radin, one of America’s first Chief Innovation Officers, Shares the Lessons

August 13th, 2013|

Amy Radin became one of America's first Chief Innovation Officers when Citigroup appointed her to the role in 2005. She is currently Chief Innovation officer at E*Trade Financial, the leading online discount stock brokerage. Amy talks to Innovation Management about what it takes to be a head up on innovation in a major corporation.

How to Shock Management into Rethinking the Business Model – Prove They can be Blindsided by a Fingerprint

May 15th, 2013|

Despite a detailed process with countless hours of work, and sincere efforts to take a longer-term, strategic look at where to play and how to win, many businesses fail to anticipate fundamental shifts that should cause them to rethink their entire business model. The results are often disastrous - too many businesses end up on life support. This article presents a new concept called “Competitive Fingerprints” that will allow readers to anticipate shifts and adapt their business model to capitalize on future market realities.

How to Build a Lean High Performance Innovation Team

May 13th, 2013|

The world we live in is changing at a dizzying rate and sectors including energy, technology, entertainment, communications, finance, sports, manufacturing and engineering are all experiencing shifts on a seismic scale. Many of the innovative advances of the past ten years, from smart phones to digital cameras have become commoditised and creativity has become the currency of success. In this article author Matthew Griffin shows how large and small organisations alike can build lean, agile, high performance innovations teams and bridge any shift successfully.

Four of Five Social Innovators Recommend…

February 18th, 2013|

Gartner predicts that four of five large enterprises that pursue social innovation with their employees and the world at large will, over the next couple years, fail in their endeavors. Ouch. Meatloaf gave better odds. In this article innovation architect Doug Collins explores how you might increase the odds of gaining a coveted membership to the twenty percent club.

Why Managers Fear Innovation

February 14th, 2013|

Innovation is a paradox for management. On the one hand you are well aware that you have to take new roads before you reach the end of the present dead end street. On the other hand it is risky. It takes a lot of time. And it takes a lot of resources. Research shows that only one out of seven innovation projects is successful. So saying yes to innovation is a step into the unknown. It creates fear of failure, which causes fear to innovate. It's like sailing to the South Pole like Shackleton, where the surrounding ice can stop you any moment.

The Seven Essential Characteristics of Innovative Companies

December 18th, 2012|

What makes a company innovative? Innovation is nothing more than a tool that enables companies to achieve unique, strategic goals. It should not simply be a slogan, nor an end unto itself, argues Jeffrey Baumgartner. To be truly innovative, an organization should have seven essential characteristics.

Foment Your Culture of Innovation

December 11th, 2012|

Many seek a culture of innovation for their organization. What characterizes such a culture? How would you know if you have one? Would your colleagues agree? In this article, innovation architect Doug Collins reflects on the characteristics that comprise a culture of innovation. He explores, too, how people might assess the state of their organization as a first step in fomenting a culture of innovation.

The Innovation F-word

September 25th, 2012|

Fail fast. Fail cheap. Fail early. Go out to fail. We have all heard these words numerous times in connection to innovation and how to create radical innovation, the ultimate dream for all of us involved in the field. In fact the f-word is used so frequently in connection to innovation that it is about to become yet another meaningless slogan. Why is failure so hard? In this blog post Susanna Bill takes failure out of slogans and into a human orientated perspective.

Five Ways to Commit Innovation Suicide

June 27th, 2012|

Customers change. Competitors change. Technology changes. If you don’t do anything, new and competitive products catch up and overtake your products and services quickly. A study by A.D. Little has shown that the life cycle of products has decreased by factor 4 the last fifty years. So innovation is essential. But it is time consuming. It demands a lot of resources. And a positive outcome is very uncertain. In this blog Gijs van Wulfen offers a helping hand by identifying five common mistakes to avoid.

A Lesson in Innovation – Why did the Segway Fail?

May 2nd, 2012|

The Segway PT is a two-wheeled, self-balancing battery electric vehicle invented by Dean Kamen. It was launched in 2001 in a blizzard of publicity. Yet it has failed to gain significant market acceptance and is now something of a curiosity. In this article Paul Sloane takes a look at what lessons to be learned from the failure.

10 Tips for Successful Innovation Teams

April 12th, 2012|

Innovation projects are said to fail 90% of the time. Why is this? Part of the answer lies in the special “innovation teams” who are mandated with finding breakthrough growth in large corporations. Setting these teams up for success is vital, yet corporations often fail when doing this. This article provides a collection of ten tips that serve as a talent management roadmap for growth companies in search of high-performance teams that deliver.

3 key issues that can kill your innovation initiatives

May 17th, 2009|

Culture, Communication and Collaboration are the 3 C's that form the "soft-side" foundation of successful innovation. Without understanding your personnel "raw material" for innovation, the process may be difficult if not impossible to execute successfully.