“In inclusive ecosystems changes do not come just from the top. Instead, innovation can happen much faster by harnessing the knowledge, ideas and experience of the entire ecosystem. As an added bonus, people who are included in the innovation process are likely to be committed to the testing phase too.”
Tim Proome, General manager: Supply chain services, Tarsus Distribution
How to accelerate innovation to support business model reinvention
Tim Proome, General manager: Supply Chain Services, Tarsus Distribution
Business model reinvention is about creating opportunities for transformative growth. It paves the way for an organisation to reinvent its core product and service offerings and enhance its value proposition for customers whose purchasing habits have changed dramatically due to the pandemic.
Finding new ways of creating, delivering and capturing value are key to unlocking post-crisis growth. According to a report by McKinsey & Co, business leaders expect the fallout from COVID-19 to fundamentally change the way they do business over the next five years, asserting that the crisis will have a lasting impact on their customers’ needs. They also agree that the crisis will create significant new opportunities for growth.
To be flexible and respond faster to rapidly changing market dynamics requires businesses of all sizes to accelerate innovation while also building key capabilities for the future.
Here are four critical steps to getting it right:
1. Focus on product innovation
Home in on how to improve goods and services. This is not only about developing something new, but also about taking what’s already there and making it considerably better.
Apple did not make the first smartphone, but it was the first to make them better. The iPhone was unique in its combination of hardware and software that produced a rich mobile Internet browsing experience. There simply was no comparison with the other phones of its day. Not every company can be like Apple, but many can find a specific customer need and then develop the best solution for it.
2. Democratise innovation
In his 2005 book “Democratising Innovation”, Eric von Hippel wrote about the process of user-centred innovation and how it could benefit both users and businesses. He argued that manufacturers should redesign their innovation processes and that they should systematically seek out innovations developed by users.
Today, an inclusive approach to innovation takes advantage of the collective intelligence of stakeholders, including employees and customers, the idea being that more heads lead to better ideas. In inclusive ecosystems changes do not come just from the top. Instead, innovation can happen much faster by harnessing the knowledge, ideas and experience of the entire ecosystem. As an added bonus, people who are included in the innovation process are likely to be committed to the testing phase too.
3. Accelerate execution
Business with leaders and employees who operate at a faster pace are much more successful, profitable, and impactful – primarily because they reduce time to value.
They address and resolve problems quickly before they turn into a crisis. They focus on work and tasks that add value, and they keep moving forward. In meetings, decisions get made and people are kept accountable. They know that success is defined by speed of execution.
4. Foster an innovation culture
Make innovation a core value of the organisation. Encourage employees at all levels to think independently and find new ways to solve problems.
Trusted and empowered team are capable of great achievements. In a culture of innovation, failure is inevitable, and it must be OK. Fear of uncertainty is an unnecessary barrier to freedom of creative thought.
Democratizing Innovation by Eric Von Hippel, The MIT Press, 2005