Is every corner of your organization pulsing—at all times—with radical, rule-breaking concepts for new products, services, strategies, and businesses, providing you with a continual flow of innovations with which to delight your customers, confound your competitors, and richly reward your shareholders?
Can you go online 24/7 and get a comprehensive, real-time window on your company’s global innovation activities—a dashboard that shows you how many ideas are being produced, which parts of the world they’re coming from, how fast they are progressing through the pipeline, when they are going to be commercialized, and what their future financial value is expected to be?
Has every single one of your employees, at every level and in every location, been trained in the principles, skills, and tools of innovation— greatly enhancing their ability to discover new insights, spot unexploited opportunities, and generate novel business ideas?
And does your company have a worldwide innovation infrastructure where those people can quickly find the cash, the talent, and the management support they need to turn their ideas into market success stories?
If not, why not? Today, the notion of building and sustaining a deep, corporate-wide capability for innovation is no longer just a vague aspiration but a daily reality inside many organizations.
So the issue is this: what is stopping your company from dramatically improving its own capacity for innovation? What would it take to mobilize and monetize the imagination of your employees, customers, and business partners—every single day, and in every part of your organization?
Throughout the many articles on this website, and on the pages of my book Innovation to the Core: A Blueprint for Transforming the Way Your Company Innovates, you will find market-proven tools, techniques, and methodologies that can help any company to successfully turn innovation into a deep and sustainable core competence, and thereby outperform industry rivals.
Right now, the list of major companies that are working methodically on the innovation management challenge is growing rapidly around the world, and the progress of these firms provides hope and inspiration for the rest of the business community – especially for the innovation community that is represented on this site and on our LinkedIn Group. These major players are demonstrating that companies of every stripe – even large, old-line industrial organizations – really can tackle the challenge of innovation successfully in a highly systemic way.
Indeed, with a serious, broad-based effort and with the right set of design rules, innovation can become a systemic capability inside any organization—as ubiquitous as Six Sigma, cycle time, rapid customer service, or any of the other complex processes that companies have been honing over the last thirty years. These innovative companies – and the many innovation process champions throughout our online community – are proving that you can indeed turn innovation from an ethereal, hit-and-miss thing into a deep core competence, something that becomes part of a company’s bloodstream.
I want to use this opportunity to thank all those who have supported our efforts at Innovation Excellence to make innovation resources, proven answers, and best practices accessible for the greater good. What began with a few pioneers has turned into a true innovation movement – and it continues to gain momentum. I salute the many thousands of members of our growing online community as true heroes of innovation!
Rowan Gibson is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading experts on enterprise innovation. He is co-author of the bestseller Innovation to the Core and a much in-demand public speaker around the globe. On Twitter he is @RowanGibson.