business growth

Innovation and Process Automation for Small Businesses

In the world of small businesses, there are only three golden rules you need to keep in mind:

A Closer Look at the Three Skill Sets that Enable Innovation

In our previous posts, we’ve made two major points. One: innovation is vital for the long-term survival of any business. And two: a handful of crazy ideas won’t cut the mustard. Successful innovation is a complex process that requires a whole lot more than just riotous creativity. Based on academic research, and in close collaboration with professor Frederik Anseel (Ghent University), we’ve defined three innovation profiles: ideators, champions and implementers. Each of these personas has a crucial part to play in what we like to call ‘innovation dream teams’. What makes them unique and why do you need all three? Let’s take a closer look.

Rethinking The Way We Generate Insights

Identifying new sources of growth has become increasingly more complex given the myriad of alternatives that new business models, strategic partnerships, advanced technologies, and other disruptive mechanisms offer us. Taking a systematic approach to finding these opportunities means veering from our usual mode of operations to a much more speculative mindset where the learning journey is as important as the destination itself.

Bold Innovation in Mature Markets: The Five Vectors

Doing more of the same old product improvements, extensions and modifications – product renovation – won’t deliver the sales and profit impact needed to grow the business. To the great majority of businesses, product development means line extensions, improvements and product modifications and only serves to maintain market share. Firms increasingly compete for a piece of a shrinking pie by introducing one insignificant new product after another. The launch of a truly differentiated new product in mature markets is rare these days.

Does Open Innovation lead to Faster Growth?

A recent study from the UK Innovation Research centre set out to examine how companies were using open innovation. The report makes a thought-provoking comparison of the innovation styles of companies. It indicates that those companies that are active in open innovation in both giving and receiving ideas achieve higher rates of innovation and of revenue growth.

How to Deal with Innovation Management When You Are Small?

Innovation is frequently marketed as driver of growth and prerequisite for remaining competitive. However, the process is often risky, especially for small or medium sized enterprises in search of ways to successfully manage their new products, services or businesses in a systemic and stable manner. Luckily, tools such as the “A.T. Kearney House of Innovation” are available to lend an essential helping hand.

Coaching SMEs to Innovate

In this article Dr Rowan Gilmore shares lessons from the AIC’s Innovation Coaching program which was first introduced to help Queensland (Australia) SMEs in 2009. The program works with SMEs in a number of industry sectors, helping company management to “think outside the box” to grow their business or develop new products and services.

From Blind Spots to Strategic Intelligence

Nothing breeds success like success, at least according to the old proverb. However, this is not always the case when it comes to business growth. Many organizations, from Polaroid to Sony, have become victims of their own success: they achieved enormous growth by introducing new products – the Polaroid camera, the Sony Walkman – but as the marketplace matured this growth slowed and they were left looking for alternative paths.

Connect + Develop℠ with Procter & Gamble

At the heart of P&G’s design for growth is their capability to innovate. Over 50 % of innovation should be acquired from outside the company, according to CEO A G Lafley. Read more about how P&G works with open innovation through the concept of Connect + Develop.

Why Business Model Innovation Matters

Managers frequently rely on innovation to drive profitable growth. In many industries new products and services are fundamental. However, although product and service innovations are and have been important to firms for decades, competitive pressures and the search for increased profit have pushed business model innovation higher on the priority list.