Looking to the crowd for knowledge isn’t a new concept. The Sydney Opera House was the result of an open call for designs to a global community (to which 233 people submitted ideas) and the now-iconic building was selected from amongst them.
IdeaScale has honored innovation leaders in their annual Innovation Management Awards for six years now. Award recipients have come from almost every industry with a variety of goals (from eradicating cancer to identifying new university technology best practices), but this year’s winners share a few key characteristics that all innovation leaders need to embody.
Every year, IdeaScale convenes a gathering of innovators from all over the world who share their best practices in managing and delivering on new ideas.
In our previous article we focused on some of the serious issues being faced by clients and vendors who are working with innovation / ideation platforms.
If you’re in charge of innovation, it means that you’re constantly being surprised. Not just because technology and trends are emerging that are impacting your business in new and unexpected ways, but almost every project that you’re working on continues to evolve and improve over time.
If you’re working with an innovation management platform, then you know the importance of building a community. The success of these programs is intrinsically linked to the spirit and engagement of your community: how much they participate, how they’re participating, why they’re participating.
In November, the United States Coast Guard presented at Open Nation on their Coast Guard ideas program. They talked about how lessons learned from previous extreme weather occurrences (Sandy, etc.) still hadn’t become institutional knowledge by the 2017 hurricane season when they were so desperately needed. The reason that this hadn’t happened was that all of the methods for collecting new ideas were slow and opaque.
Even if your organization doesn’t yet have an embedded innovation program, I can guarantee that your organization cares about finding opportunities for savings. That’s why programs like LEAN and Six Sigma continue to do so well. There are always new ways to improve efficiency and time saved almost always means money saved.
As the examples of successful use of crowdsourcing to address complex technical, business and social issues grow in numbers, so do the instances of failed crowdsourcing campaigns. To make crowdsourcing a widely recognized idea-generating and problem-solving tool, it’s imperative to understand the reasons of why this tool can fail or underperform.
Closed innovation is a thing of the past. Scalable, open innovation as a business practice has yielded the most dramatic and successful results - and communication and connection with your audience is essential to success. By engaging through at least four of eight channels (website, email, social, public relations, partners, events, offline, and beyond), a robust communications process and schedule can yield valuable insights to help you innovate better.
Regardless of whether the workplace is a public or private entity, departments often struggle to prioritize assigned projects, and align individual projects with overall objectives. In this case study, we’ll explore how the National Cancer Institute implemented crowdsourcing to enable the research community and the public to submit ideas on how best to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer - and how as a result, they were able to prioritize existing research and initiatives into areas where additional resources were needed the most.
This case study explores the results of an innovation research process undertaken by Oxfam, which compared internal feedback vs. general public feedback to identical sets of ideas. In comparing responses between these two audiences, Oxfam discovered an immediate and obvious divide between their staff’s opinions about which fundraising ideas would perform the best, versus what the general public preferred - an important lesson about avoiding the bubble of the echo chamber.
An in-house innovation program is becoming a common fixture in the most competitive organizations. However, in a recessed economy, these research & development programs can sometimes get eliminated, because they struggle to prove or articulate value.
Companies that are looking to gain a competitive edge are also looking for the innovators among them. But what do innovators look like?