Julhiet sterwen witnessed, over the past few years, the increase of innovative initiatives and structures within large organizations: labs, corporate venture funds, partnerships with incubators, intrapreneurship programs, hackathons, start-up studios and more. And we have also witnessed their deception.
Why is this?
Innovation strategy and ambition
Innovation must be driven by the organization’s leaders carrying a vision. Yet most organizations have not formally defined and prioritized the innovation challenges they want to solve in the coming years. Without doing so, they can generate numerous proofs of concepts without making any impact.
What’s the solution?
- Taking a different approach to the strategic plan
- Clearly stating the innovation topics to be tackled
- Setting concrete targets for the new businesses to be invented / to be developped
Innovation and objectives
In the face of ever faster disruption cycles, three distinct issues appear, related to distinct types of innovation :
- Inventing the jobs of tomorrow with a disruptive innovation
- Updating existing models with incremental innovation
- Bringing an entrepreneurial spirit to the company through cultural transformation
One common error is forgetting that these three objectives involve very different approaches and resources.
The success of an innovation is not measured by the ability to generate proofs of concepts with no future but by scaling up an idea to create impact. This requires upfront preparation, setting up a suitable environment in terms of methodology, people, technology and organization.
Performance requirements and indicators
A lack of innovation strategy or objective targets leads to unclear governance and systematically disappointing value creation. Often, companies measure the effort invested in innovation (R&D budget, full-time employees allocated to projects, corporate venture funds, etc.) to the detriment of results, although it is possible to measure them!