Front End of Innovation
Whitepaper: Stimulating and Measuring Open and Cross Innovation
As two intermediaries from Hamburg that foster open and cross innovation processes, Science Scout (an initiative of Hamburg Innovation) and Cross Innovation Hub (Hamburg Kreativ Gesellschaft) joined forces to start a discussion around the stimulation and measurement of open and cross innovation processes.
Five Questions to Answer Before Crowdsourcing
As the director of the IdeaScale Crowd community, I recently had the opportunity to share some insights and best practices for innovators who are new to crowdsourcing, and may not have conducted their first campaign yet. We discussed five questions to ask as you prepare for your first campaign, why those questions are important, and some examples of good and bad answers to those questions.
Why Bother with User Innovation?
Users are a hidden ‘front end’ of innovation, highly motivated, prepared to experiment and tolerant of things not working right first time. So it makes sense to try and bring this perspective to bear.
How to be an Effective Innovator?
Being an effective innovator is not an easy task. The good news is that you can learn from others’ experiences. Gijs van Wulfen walks us through some of the important lessons he learned as a marketer, strategy consultant and innovation facilitator.
How to Effectively Manage the Fuzzy Back End of Innovation
You have doubtless heard of the fuzzy front end of innovation. It is another name for idea generation. But Jeffrey Baumgartner believes that the back end of innovation, where implementation is supposed to take place, is just as fuzzy. Many companies lack clear, efficient processes for implementing the ideas they generate.
Searching for Needs is the Best Innovation Strategy
Is it possible that only a quarter of all companies are highly effective at the front end of innovation? If so, what kinds of companies are most successful at the ideation and conversion stages? Gijs van Wulfen describes three different kinds of companies and suggests the Need Seekers strategy offers the greatest potential for superior performance in the long term.
How to Survive your Innovation Project?
Sometimes the most difficult part of innovation is how to survive your innovation project internally. Most organizations that really need to innovate have a risk adverse culture and managing innovation has everything to do with managing expectations and reducing risks. Gijs van Wulfen offers seven practical tips how to survive your innovation project.
Real Innovators Sail Off the Map
Innovation is often regarded as a journey of discovery. Small steps or large, its purpose is locating and conquering new innovation territory. When incremental explorations are not enough though, it might be time to sail off the map. In this article, Gijs van Wulfen takes a look at Christopher Columbus’ example, and how urgency, courage, new technology, teamwork and perseverance can help corporate explorers reach the New Found Land.
Being First: Ten Innovation lessons from Mount Everest
Reaching the highest point of the Earth is one of the greatest expeditions of mankind. It made Edmund Hillary famous. After reading Hillary’s ‘View from the Summit’ Gijs van Wulfen shares ten innovation lessons on being 1st.
7 Innovation Lessons From the First Man on the Moon
After reading Neil Armstrong’s biography, Gijs van Wulfen discovered there are many lessons from the Apollo 11 trip which can be applied to our everyday innovation projects. Here are seven inspirational lessons learned. Can you think of more?
Innovate Like Famous Explorers
Innovation nowadays has many similarities with voyages of discovery in the past. In this blog Gijs van Wulfen walks us through practical learnings for innovation inspired by successful explorers.
Five Ways to Commit Innovation Suicide
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.
The 66-Point Innovation Checklist
Gijs van Wulfen has developed a structured innovation approach connecting creativity and business reality in five steps: Full Steam Ahead, Observe and Learn, Raise Ideas, Test Ideas and Homecoming. Here he summarizes the benefits of his method in a 66-point innovation checklist.
How to Pick the Right Idea?
Imagine you have just finished a successful brainstorming session and you're sitting in front of a long list of great ideas. Now what? Gijs van Wulfen shares five important learnings on how to pick the right idea.
21 Situations When you Should Not Innovate
With an abundance of innovation success stories circulating the net and popular business publications, when do we hear about the other side of the coin – when is innovation not the answer to our organization's problems? Gijs van Wulfen provides 21 examples of when we should avoid innovating. What are your experiences?
The Bouillon Soup Lesson: You Cannot Innovate Alone
It is often in the commencement of one’s career that simple mistakes are made. Whether it’s a result of inexperience, blinding enthusiasm or fearlessness doesn’t really matter, as long as the lesson learned serves you, and others, well. Gijs van Wulfen shares a constructive experience from his first innovation position.
How to Get Rid of Old Ideas?
Have you participated in a brainstorming session that felt like wasted time? For some reason no new and interesting ideas were formed? Perhaps you need to get rid of your old ideas first! Gis van Wulfen explains.
We Need to Innovate. Now What?
If you are not one of the lucky few to work in one of the most innovative companies in the world, you've probably thought at some point "we really need to innovate." Gijs van Wulfen provides practical advice on where to begin.
Starting Innovation Seems Easier for Smaller Companies
After polling innovation managers and experts from all over the world about the size of the organization in relation to the ease of starting an innovation initiative, Gijs Van Wulfen takes a look at the arguments.
Innovators Look for Problems
A brand new innovation often requires changing a person’s behavior or habits, which can be a nearly impossible task! So why not approach innovation by looking at existing problems? Gijs van Wulfen looks at 10 practical problems and innovative new products or services solving them.
One Out of Seven is Ridiculous
Suppose you are a professional soccer player, chosen to kick the penalties for your team. And you scored only one out of seven penalties. Would you be satisfied? How long do you think your trainer and fellow players let you take penalties? They would probably kick you out of the team after the second failure in a row.
40 Reasons Why People Struggle with Innovation
The fuzzy front end of innovation confronts you with a lot of questions. For the new edition of my book ‘Creating innovative Products and Services' I have posted a question on front-end innovation struggles to innovation practioners in more than 20 linkedin groups. The response was massive. I made a list of forty reasons why people struggle starting innovation in their companies in daily practice.
Use Front and Back End of Innovation Skills
With a front-end that's fuzzy and a back end that isn't very effective, no wonder creating new products and services isn't easy. Gijs van Wulfen explains why connecting the two can enhance inspiration and smooth the innovation implementation process.
How Strategic Planning Smothers Innovation: One Organization’s Story
The story of a once-innovative financial services firm illustrates the perils of substituting 'messy' innovation with a logical, orderly strategic planning process.
Never Start Innovation with an Idea
Are you trying to come up with the next big idea to jump-start innovation in your company? Try another approach. Gijs van Wulfen gives us three reasons why you should not start an innovation initiative with new ideas, rather formulate a clear and concrete innovation assignment. Here's how!
20 Tips for Ideation Excellence
The so called fuzzy front end of innovation doesn´t have to be that fuzzy. Here is Gijs van Wulfen´s comprehensive list of tips for polishing and perfecting your ideation process.
Seven Managers Struggling with Innovation
Managers may come in all shapes and sizes, but almost all of them struggle with innovation or the lack there of in their organization. Gis van Wulfen introduces us to seven different managers who explain their views on innovation. Do you recognize any of them?
Drafting Mini New Business Cases
Mini new business cases tackle the critical uncertainties during the ideation phase so that your idea makes the best first impression to the board. Gijs van Wulfen explains how.