Ideation focused crowdsourcing has been around for some time, but the approach is often not producing the desired business results in order to justify continued investments. How does the model need to change in order to drive real business value?
The front and back ends of innovation test us in different ways. At the front end we wrestle with, “What problem is worth solving?” At the back end we wrestle with, “How do deliver something that offers greater relative advantage than the next best alternative?” The back end can test us the most. We tap fully our potential for leadership to produce something new—something that, in its newness, disrupts the status quo. In this article, innovation architect Doug Collins explores the link between the Skunk Works®, a successful approach to the back end developed during World War II, in the context of today’s approach to collaborative innovation.
All too often we see companies coming to us with a new technological advancement that they are very excited about. Sadly, having a new technology does not guarantee a winning innovation. One needs to work hard at the front end to understand what the consumer needs and how the current market offer isn’t meeting those needs. Only against this backdrop can we hope to bring an idea to market that will be truly disruptive. The following article explains.
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.
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.
Let’s start by defining creativity as thinking of new ideas and innovation as implementing new ideas. The assumption has always been that if we want to deliver innovation in terms of new products, services, processes, etc. then we need lots of creativity in order to generate ideas. Creativity is the ‘front end of innovation’. It is how we fill the pipeline that generates a flow of new products. It follows that we should take actions to encourage creativity in the workplace if we want more innovation.
Practicing collaborative innovation takes time, money, and attention. Organizational leaders ask practitioners to “show me the ROI.” How does the practice benefit the organization? In this article innovation architect Doug Collins explores how engagement serves as the return on the front end of the practice—and why engagement matters.
The Front End of Innovation is that fuzzy bit where someone, or a group, conceives a new business concept. We say “fuzzy” because it’s the part of the innovation process that is the most purely creative. It’s a step into the unknown to create something new and calls for different tools and techniques. Because it’s fuzzy, we think it’s useful to break it down and look at it step-by-step.
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.
Blueprints help people envision the future in a clear, practical way. What will the finished work look like? How will we create it? What possibilities does the new creation hold? In this article innovation architect Doug Collins introduces a blueprint for the practice of collaborative innovation. The blueprint helps people envision their organization as they transform it through the practice.
In a recent SAP Community Network post Harun Asad mentioned innovation as one social strategy. In this article he explores the role of social in innovation strategy more broadly, and cites several real-world examples as well as shares some predictions for the future.
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.
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.
The firm has recently hired an ethnography and market research expert and now it's time to integrate these skills into their methodology. Matt and Marlow discuss the details.
Much of the action in innovation during the past five years has been around the front end of innovation – acquiring and gating new ideas. Doug Collins asks whether we are applying the right processes to the fuzzy front end..