Thursday, November 20, 2014

Rethinking Your Innovation System
OCTOBER 28, 2014by Andrew Taylor and Kim Wagner

This is a GREAT article that I strongly suggest you read

Companies know that innovation is one of the keys to growth. Seventy-five percent of the respondents in BCG’s report The Most Innovative Companies 2014: Breaking Through Is Hard to Do (October 2014) ranked innovation as a top-three priority for their company; 22 percent said it was their company’s top priority. More than 60 percent said their company planned to increase investment in innovation in the coming year.
So where are the results?
Companies are the first to admit that there is room for improvement. CEOs question whether they are getting a return commensurate with their investments. Many innovation managers express frustration that their teams are not developing the successful new products and services—or the compelling product or service extensions—that they seek. 
Compounding those challenges, the bar is being raised. Customers, used to continuing progress and improvement, expect more. New technologies, especially digital advances, have conditioned customers to expect it more quickly. But long-used innovation models no longer keep up. Processes are too slow, dragged out by too many rigid stages and gates to clear. 
Decision making has become overly complicated and consensus based, resulting in compromised, incremental solutions with little chance for a big impact.
As customer expectations grow and markets evolve more quickly, companies can’t expect to innovate in the ways they used to. Innovation models themselves need to be systematically innovated, rethought, and updated….
…. innovation is a system: a mixture of insight and creativity, as well as a disciplined process that consistently promotes progress. This system has three major components: a strategy comprising choices on where and how to create growth and value through innovation; a supporting set of processes for research and product development; and an enabling set of systems, tools, and capabilities. (See the exhibit, “World-Class Companies Treat Innovation as a System.”) The system should be rooted in experimentation, and, like all adaptive systems, it must evolve over time as the external environment and internal needs change.

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