Innovation is a much-abused business subject. The proliferation of books and experts on the subject in recent times has reached astronomical proportions. An Amazon search for books with ‘innovation’ in their titles yields over 20,000 hits. Yet, in the real world of business, there is little real innovation happening.
Innovation is hard work. Companies that are true innovators understand that this is not simply about processes or having smart people. It is about culture and the ability to understand the markets operated in, and probably most importantly, understanding the needs of existing and future customers. But to do this requires a means of connecting internal networks externally and creating a customer-centric ethos. The opportunity for firms to link their internal innovation efforts with external networks is a much under-estimated sphere of focus for the future of competitivity and profitability.
Today there are numerous crowdsourcing platforms and networks that bring together millions of designers, data scientists and coders. They can scale human resources at a level not even the giants like Microsoft, Google, Apple or Facebook can match. These talents and resources can easily be made available to any company in the world regardless of their size or location. But the real power such a network could bring could be enhanced a thousand-fold if these were complemented by company created customer networks. Social media-type idea management platforms make this a practical and realistic proposition.
Nobody knows as much as everybody. And as smart as your own people might be, there are smarter people outside your organisation. Gaining insights directly from your customers, uncovering hidden-needs for future product and service design and allying this to external resources that can bring ideas to market quickly, is the future of competitiveness.
We can help equip you for the internal changes you need to cohere your internal innovation networks and build external networks. Call us if you want to know why and how the future of innovation lies in globalised networks.