Innovation has become a business mantra and a word that threatens to lose all meaning every time it’s uttered at another conference or thrown into another book title. But in spite of its omnipresence it continues to be essential – a growing field – and one of the only practices that might save businesses from extinction.
In view of creating more competitive regions and industry sectors, innovation capabilities of SMEs play a central role. SMEs are strong economic drivers in many countries, and their ability to innovate will determine the health of national and regional economies in the future. A key support for SMEs in their innovation efforts are public innovation support programmes.
The state of the global innovation economy is alive and well, according to a recent survey report featuring organisations actively developing and implementing new technologies and solutions across a range of industries.
The Fourth Product Portfolio Management Benchmark Study identified challenges organizations face in speeding innovation to bring products to market. The biggest disconnect appears between middle management and executives as to where the organization is with their innovation maturity. Bridging this gap may be the most important thing you do to improve ROI.
Findings from the Fourth Product Portfolio Management Benchmark SurveyImagine sailing in the World Cup race without a strategic plan or a map. It is a sport where speed is of the essence, decisions (and perhaps more importantly the timing of those decisions) are paramount, and team talents must be optimized at any moment. With competitors abound displaying their impressive spinnakers and advanced technology--only the risk takers advance. The will to win is apparent, yet without a strategy and a map, a team would drift into execution mode and lose the race.
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.
Before getting to this stage, 44% of organizations say the primary barriers to enterprise-wide analytics adoption are cultural. IBM Institute for Business Value and MIT Sloan Management review released research based on a survey of more than 4,500 business leaders from more than 120 countries and a variety of industries.
Campaign teams cover a lot of ground as they work with the sponsor of a collaborative innovation challenge. In this article, innovation architect Doug Collins makes the case that campaign teams should focus their energies on helping the sponsor develop the critical question that serves as the basis for convening the community. Forming the powerful question—the question that accurately reflects the sponsor’s intent and that resonates with the community—yields the greatest return on time spent in developing the campaign, relative to its ultimate success.
How do you go about incorporating end-user viewpoints into innovation? Indeed should you? There's a debate around both questions but whichever side of the fence you are on, social science has a role to play in understanding how end-users can and should influence product development. Emma Pivetta I Contreras describes the techniques.
Corporate innovation has traditionally been driven from the technology side; from departments like R&D and engineering. It’s an approach that can be very successful. Indeed, it has often led to great breakthroughs. But if a company wants to win in today’s value-based economy, this is no longer the best way of doing things.
Asking customers for feedback is good, but observing them is often a much more productive source of breakthrough product ideas, according to Paul Sloane.