Management

41 Ways to Foster a Culture of Innovation

Yes, we know you want your organization to be more innovative. And yes, we know you want to improve your organization’s culture of innovation. The best place to start? With YOU. Give up needing to be the smartest person in the room. Seek out people who think differently than you do. Reward new thinking. When you delegate, delegate. Listen more, ...

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Innovation Necessity – Thinking the Unthinkable

“Solitary, poor, brutish, nasty and short” is how Thomas Hobbs, a political thinker from the 1600s described the “life of man”. Hobbs, along with John Locke and a number of other social and political theorists, developed ideas around the social contract which influenced many thinkers and lead to changes in government in the United States (our revolution from England) and ...

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Participation to Build a Nation

While in Africa the world’s eyes are focused on Libya, further down the continent South Sudan is working through the process of formally separating from North Sudan to become the world’s newest nation. After years of civil war there are still strong tensions between the two states, but it was great to discover how the South chose a song in ...

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Role of R&D in Driving Product Adoption

Most organizations strive to keep their product developers locked up far away from customers. After all, you never know what an engineer or designer might say. Those R&D guys tend to be coldly straight, to the point and struggle with the concept of “spin,” which can be kind of scary. They also deeply understand the product, its special nuances, performance ...

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Tear Down These Walls

In 1987, president Ronald Reagan gave his famous speech in which he implored Soviet Prime Minister Mikhail Gorbachev to “tear down this wall!” I’m going to paraphrase his history-altering quote and urge today’s business leaders to tear down these walls! Which walls? The ones that get in the way of cross-communication within organizations and prevent innovation from taking place. Unlike ...

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Will Death of Blockbuster Kill Redbox?

Let’s examine something that has been bothering me for a little while. I’ve been renting my movies from Blockbuster and Redbox for years, but now my local Blockbuster store is closing. When I’ve expressed this sadness to friends and colleagues, people just tell me to get Netflix. Let’s dig quickly into the psychology behind the Netflix/Blockbuster/Redbox choice that each of ...

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Balancing Innovation Supply and Demand

To build and sustain a robust innovation capability, your company needs to carefully manage both the supply side and the demand side of innovation. By “supply” I mean the sheer flow—and the quality—of new ideas entering your innovation pipeline and moving through its various stages. By “demand” I mean the natural, reflexive pull for those ideas within and across the ...

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Escaping Groupthink

How can you break out of the group-think that affects most large organizations? How can you escape from the corporate frameworks that shape discussions and ideas? Philips is moving from a high-volume electronics manufacturer to a design-led, lifestyle technology company. It needs help to get there so it set up a ‘simplicity board’. Philips reckoned it needed a fresh perspective ...

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Random Thoughts on Innovation and Design Thinking

I was watching the film ‘Inception’ on a long flight last week and I remembered one interesting dialogue from the film “How do you translate business strategy into emotion?”. I was not really watching as I was editing the next issue of M/I/S/C magazine, but the line caught my attention. I rewound it back and tried to make sure if ...

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Outside In Innovation at GE

In the past few months I have been getting interested in GE and how it is managing innovation. Often you read a number of negative reports on GE but is this just the big guy being picked upon by more nimble observers that have a limited insight into what is going on behind the walls of GE? What is under ...

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