front end of innovation

A Strategic Approach to Starting a Successful Innovation Program

I’ve recently been advising a range of leaders in how to start successful innovation programs. A couple are relaunches of efforts that were abandoned in the past, and others are starting from scratch in organizations (and sectors) that are more comfortable with the status quo.

How to Get Your Innovative Idea off the Ground in the Current Economic Climate

Incredibly, business confidence in the UK is continuing to rise, despite the spectre of Brexit and its potential implications on citizens. Many experts have attribute this to the growth of the manufacturing sector, which recorded a Credit Manager's Index (CMI) score of 62.7 during the first quarter of 2017 and a 1.5% increase from the previous quarter. This hints at significant growth potential for product-oriented firms, which are currently able to increase exports due to a more competitively priced (and fundamentally weaker) pound.

The Right Time will Never Come: 5 Steps to Execute Your Idea

After two years of coming up with my idea, I finally launched the platform 'Scout Me Online.' All the reasons why we procrastinate, avoid or delay in making decisions committing to a specific task are because we believe we need to have something or be perfect. And when we don’t have those, or we doubt ourselves, which reinforces our current belief.

Systematic Idea Generation and Organizational Capabilities for Front-End Innovation Performance in SMEs

This study seeks to answer two key questions about the front-end innovation: when do idea generation activities involving internal and external partner’s payoff, and which organizational capabilities support idea generation activities for achieving high front-end performance?

How to Make Your Design Thinking Program Turn Into Something Real

Why do a large part of the design thinking projects in the corporate world never pass through the prototype phase? In recent years I’ve been involved with many design thinking initiatives. Many of them related to the development of new products inside large companies in industries such as finance, health, education and consumer goods.

Unlocking the One Trillion-Dollar Sustainable Innovation Opportunity

Last week Unilever announced research showing that one-third of consumers now purchase its brands based on their good social and environmental performance, but went on to suggest that brands are missing an opportunity from not promoting sustainability effectively. Getting this right could unlock a further $1trn market opportunity for sustainability innovators.

How to Innovate Efficiently: Six Ways to ‘Unfuzzy’ the Front-end

Kittens are ‘fuzzy’ because they’re soft and fluffy. But if someone uses the same word to describe the early stages – or ‘front-end’ – of an innovation process, the meaning is less cute. In that case, ‘fuzzy’ means ‘blurry’, ‘unclear’ or even ‘incoherent’. In many cases, innovation projects start off as chaotic and seemingly aimless ventures. In fact, this happens so often, that organizations tend to accept the ‘fuzzy front-end of innovation’ as a necessary evil. At CREAX, we believe front-end fuzziness can and should be drastically reduced in order to innovate efficiently.

Learning from the Humanitarian Innovation Laboratory

Innovation is all about survival – how often do we hear versions of that line? But in the field of humanitarian aid this really is the case. Innovation can sometimes be a matter of life and death. It’s a world characterised by crisis – but it’s also somewhere from which we might learn some new lessons to help manage innovation.

Creativity is not Enough: How to Turn Ideas into Revenue

“Eureka!’, Archimedes famously howled, while running butt naked through the streets of Syracuse. Soaking in his bath tub, the bearded Greek inventor had just discovered a new method of determining an object’s volume. Funnily enough, this well-known story captures two myths about innovation. One: it’s the work of a sole – and usually slightly eccentric – inventor. Two: chance has a part to play. For businesses, the reality is vastly different. Indeed, turning ideas into revenue requires quite a bit more than just ideation and luck.

Six Levers For Solving The Corporate Innovation Problem – Part 3

This is the third part of a three-part article series. We are investigating why – despite all the investments made into the early phase of innovation – innovation results remain disappointing. We call this the “corporate innovation problem”. In the first part we illustrated that companies are investing heavily into the early phase of innovation. In the second part, we provided some metrics on the corporate innovation problem and found that the corporate innovation problem actually consists of a “complexity” problem” and a “system problem”. In this article, we show six levers to change the “system problem” and think this is the way to solve the corporate innovation problem – and ultimately to increase innovation performance.

Six Levers for Solving The Corporate Innovation Problem – Part 2

This is the second part of a three-part article series. In the first part we illustrated that firms are investing heavily into the early phase of innovation. In this second part we show that despite of all these investments, innovation results remain disappointing. We call this the “corporate innovation problem”. We provide some metrics and find that there are two root causes. In the upcoming third part we will suggest that six levers can be used to address one of the root causes. We believe that moving these levers can provide a solution to the corporate innovation problem – and ultimately lead to increased innovation performance.

Six Levers for Solving the Corporate Innovation Problem – Part 1

Innovation is at the top of the Management Agenda for many companies. For excellence in innovation, companies have to master the chain of activities from discovering valuable insight into unmet customer needs to successful market adoption.However, despite large and growing investments into innovation, results remain disappointing. We call this the “corporate innovation problem”. In this 3-part article series we dig deeper into this problem and find that there are actually two root causes for it.We focus on one of the root causes – the “system problem” – and work out six levers of improvement. Acting on these levers offers a solution to the corporate innovation problem and ultimately increases innovation performance.

Innovation: Knowing Where to Begin

Let me see if this situation sounds familiar: you’ve promised your boss that you’ll generate at least one percent growth over last year. You’ve been racking your brain with ideas about how to improve your product or develop a new offering or finding new efficiencies which will help your margins, but the few ideas that you’ve come up with haven’t had legs and pages keep coming off the calendar.

Results of a study on excellence in the Fuzzy Front-End (PART 2): Where leading firms are setting their priorities

This is the second part of a 2-part series on a study that innovation.support conducted. In the study we wanted to find out where leading firms from various industry sectors set their priorities in developing the early phase of their innovation funnels (“Fuzzy Front-End”). In this article we want to provide you with the key findings of our study.