Innovation

Management Consultants have made an art form out of delivering insights and advice into how to deal with disruption in industries. Now Consulting itself is being disrupted and the changes are significant. “Disruptive Innovation” a term coined by Clayton Christensen in 1995 was used to refer to the radical changes that caused a step change across an industry. Industries like manufacturing, music, television, advertising, airlines, publishing and many more have all been through disruptive innovation. The underlying economics of how that specific industry made money and sustained itself suddenly changed and in many cases new entrants were in a much stronger position than the incumbents.. Management Consulting is a $200B+ industry but it is mainly human driven, it is built on hiring intellectual capacity (brilliance), methodology, polish and global industry knowledge. BCG, McKinsey, Bain and others hire the brightest and most technical business school students and this can be shownContinue Reading

Cultural Innovation is not just about building a better mousetrap, rather it is driven by deeply connecting customers with a brands ideology, which in turn has transformed the the value proposition and reinvented the category. Why is innovation so hard? Why do companies who have have incredibly talented teams struggle to innovate and create a sustainable innovative new product? This article explores the challenges with large corporate innovation. Procter & Gamble a company renowned for driving what it refers to as ‘constructive disruption’ has designed a process that aligns closely to a startup with venture funding, support from tech entrepreneurs and a lean probe and learn prototyping process. But even with this best in class approach to corporate innovation the process is not exactly delivering huge results – the most recent P&G offering was a ‘Smart Pampers Diaper’ (nappy) that signals a change is needed! “Build a better mousetrap, andContinue Reading

Innovation is built using well proven methodologies, however it requires more than an effective process to motivate and inspire the imagination of an innovation team. The right leadership is central to any innovation teams success and if not managed carefully leader and team identity blocks innovation. People and particularly leadership are a very important part of a successful innovation culture and the most effective innovators need to master cultural change. A recent Harvard Business Review case study illustrates this point, Pixel a division of Deloitte Consulting provide teams of on demand talent to support client engagements. Pixel enables their clients with resources who have critical and in demand skills such as AI, Machine Learning and Data Analytics. So it is a business that is providing access to hard to find expertise and collaborating on innovation and new product development. However despite the successful completion of many projects there is still significantContinue Reading

Five trends in innovation identified by Inc. Magazine. None of these are particularly new or transformational, which is an accurate reflection of how innovation is being applied through the pandemic. Organisations are responding to market conditions, planned transformation to Digital and Online Channels have been urgently accelerated. The global trend to enable workforces to work from home has seen changes to the workplace and also to the idea of flexible and dynamic teams. Automation and Artificial Intelligence are required to increate efficiency and make everything more productive. Digital Differentiation is the New Normal: The pandemic has accelerated many companies digital transformation plans. The expectation is that now digital is the primary channel and transforming the supply chain. World Events are Driving Consumer and Corporate Behaviour: COVID has changed consumer behaviour, people are shopping differently. Considering different holiday choices and changing the products they buy. Remote Work Is Everywhere: The changeContinue Reading

The Eight Essentials of Innovation – Large companies find innovation hard, they are usually much better at executing strategy than they are at innovating. Which is why many large organisations fail to achieve growth through creativity and instead focus on optimising existing businesses. Innovation and Creativity Innovation is a complex endeavour it requires practices and processes to structure, organise and encourage it. McKinsey have identified eight essential aspects and codify this into an operating system. The first four Aspire, Choose, Discover, and Evolve are strategic and creative in nature. The second four; Accelerate, Scale, Extend and Mobilise deal with how to deliver and establish an innovation cadence in the operating model. Aspire A far reaching vision can be a compelling catalyst, provided it is realistic enough to stimulate action today. Establishing an aspiration target for innovation is not enough, the specific values need to be apportioned to relevant business ownersContinue Reading

The idea that creativity is exclusively the domain of youth is an incorrect assumption according to researchers at Ohio State University, their finding is that creativity peaks at different ages. The difference is that those people who generate radical ideas often do so before they are deeply knowledgeable in the conventions of their field. Alternatively experimenters take all of their career knowledge, together with decades of trial and error to go beyond the conventions of their domain. “Many people believe that creativity is exclusively associated with youth, but it really depends on what kind of creativity you’re talking about,”  Bruce Weinberg, Professor Economics, Ohio State University Conceptual Innovators Conceptual innovators are generating creativity in fundamentally new ways, they have clear goals, and seek to communicate specific ideas or emotions. This approach tends to peak early and most of the groundbreaking work from conceptual innovators happens early in their careers. ExperimentalContinue Reading

In order for your business to thrive you need to identify new revenue opportunities, reduce costs, grow margins, create new markets, build strong customer relationships, have a powerful company culture – these are the business of innovation. Face it – innovation is what will make your business better than your competitor, it defines what makes you different and makes you better. This article explores three models of innovation, Revenue Model Innovation, Business Model Innovation and Industry Model Innovation. Revenue Model Innovation Many organisations look at their revenue model and consider how to change that model to grow the gross yield. The concept of Freemium which has grown significantly in the last ten years is a perfect example, as is the move from outright purchase to subscription. A key aspect of revenue model innovation is to keep watching global trends and to model the impact of that change to your organisation.Continue Reading

The concept of Open Innovation was originated by Henry Chesbrough in his book (of the same name) published in 2003. Chesbrough a lecturer a Berkeley and previously Harvard coined the phrase to explain how “a distributed, more participatory and more decentralised approach to innovation” can be more effective than any company attempting to innovate on their own. A key to Open Innovation is that it takes aspects of the processes associated with Open Source Software, also it leverages the logic of effective supply chain management, but it goes much further to include the ideation and creativity in Universities and Academic institutions. So Open Innovation has been around for a while but why is it so relevant now? The HBR article examines how during the COVID19 pandemic companies are coming together in unprecedented ways to create new value often ahead of immediate commercial gains. “Open innovation has the potential to widenContinue Reading

innovation globes

Continuous innovation is a focus on gradual improvement, it consists of smaller and more frequent innovations delivering continual benefits. Many people associate the term ‘innovation’ with game-changing disruption but that is actually the exception rather than the rule. A disruptive innovation that transforms an industry with a dramatic pivot, new services, creative business/service models and global scale does not come along every day. While continuous innovation is much more gradual, it is much more reliable at delivering small gains, which continue to advance the company year in year out. By focusing on continuous innovation over big disruptive innovations companies can: Strengthen the organisations’ Innovation Muscles Continually deliver improvement Build momentum towards larger innovations – potentially disruptive innovations. To establish the right culture for continuous innovation you need to develop the right innovative leadership. The authors state these leaders must understand: How to establish clear goals for innovation that are ambitiousContinue Reading

Google and Telstra both Plan to Disrupt Learning and University Qualifications. While its not a new idea to train and accredit specific skills, Google’s recent announcement has people taking notice. That is because it is disruptive of the traditional career path from university or college. Its more accessible, it is faster and it is much cheaper to graduate. It is also providing qualifications that are recognised by over 50 US employers. “Nearly two-thirds of all new jobs created since 2010 require either high-level or medium-level digital skills” Kent Walker, Google SVP of Global Affairs 13th July 2020 The IT Certificate Employer Consortium includes US employers like Walmart, Hulu, Sprint and of course Google. It is an interesting model for building local skills and competencies. Google claims its certificate programs are “designed to help people land jobs at any company, across any sector”. Google have partnered with hundreds of schools and colleges acrossContinue Reading