Switzerland – a tiny country with few natural advantages – has become incredibly successful in the world of banking, pharmaceuticals, machinery, and more. James Breiding, author of the bestselling book, Swiss Made, explores the enabling factors for innovation in Switzerland. He makes the point that when an entrepreneur comes up with a new and innovative method or product, there will be resistance from those who have accepted the status quo. Entrepreneurs as well as intrapreneurs need to have thick skin if they wish to disrupt the market.
Let’s face it, running a business in today’s world is a formidable endeavor: change and disruption have become the new norm. In an effort to keep up, innovation is at the top of every executive’s priority list and new innovation methodologies, training and strategies are available every day. But is all the hype really helpful while Western businesses and policy-makers are working under an outdated paradigm?
This collection of case examples of IMP³rove innovation management support services for SMEs to gain competitive advantage illustrates the needs of key stakeholders in the innovation ecosystem. The case examples show how a wide variety of effective support services utilising the IMP³rove offerings address these needs.
The second edition of Crowd Dialog Europe is coming up in September, where participants from all 28 European members countries will discuss the phenomenon of swarm-based innovation processes, alternative financing scenarios and future of work models for practical insights to potential new business fields as well as an international context on trends and its relation to praxis. In preparation for the event we sit down with two of the experts to discuss crowd-related business in Italy and Cypres.
If nations increased their supportive policies and reduced their harmful policies, the rate of innovation
worldwide would significantly accelerate. This report assesses countries on the extent to which their economic and trade policies either constructively contribute to or negatively detract from the global innovation system.
Is Germany loosing the connection to today’s speed of change? In his new book “Germany’s Innovation Jam – How we create a new generation of founders,” Author Jürgen Stäudtner looks at German innovation pitfalls and corresponding resolutions.
Open innovation crowd sourcing methods, when applied to the right problem, can effectively extend the solution provider search beyond the boundaries of an industry. This article presents the application of a targeted broadcast crowd sourcing method to identify unobvious solution providers for a German chain-drive industry consortium. The majority of solutions submitted through this method were previously unknown to the consortium. This evaluation demonstrates the power of open crowd sourcing to provide solutions from discontinuous industries and how effective crowd sourcing can be in open innovation.
The Nordic countries have a high number of start-up companies but are struggling with scaling their entrepreneurs, start-ups and innovations to global large-scale operations and companies. Yet, one Nordic company namely Denmark’s Vestas Wind Systems managed to become world-beater within the global wind turbine industry. But but after 2008 Vestas has experienced a near death experience and is struggling for survival. Vestas’ story holds important lessons for other Nordic companies, not only within the renewable energy industry. It will here be argued that had Vestas paid more attention to what the management guru Peter Drucker labeled the five deadly business sins Vestas might have avoided getting into dire straits.
SMEs are perceived as the back-bone of most economies in Europe. Therefore, a lot of programs have been launched to support their growth. Over the past years, offering innovation support has become popular, complementing the well-known start-up financing and technology transfer programs. Despite the above, there is a level of dissatisfaction regarding the impact of these services.
While the previous two methods – Netnography and Social Media Solution Scouting – outline the potential of passive methods in using the power of social media for innovation, the next two approaches enable companies to interact with consumers. Configuration Tools as well as Innovation Contests invite users outside the company’s four walls to become an active part of new product development. In part two of this article you will learn how Audi and Henkel empowered the crowd and turned them into co-producers.
Open innovation has found its way into companies’ innovation processes and is a widely used approach to spur collaborative innovation with consumers. A multitude of methods and tools have come into being, creating confusion about how to make the most out of users’ knowledge and creativity. This article provides innovation managers with insights into four popular open innovation practices at four German blue chips and contrasts the various approaches.
There has been a continued debate around finding and adopting a set of standards for innovation. I blow a little hot and cold on this – not dependent on the time of day but the very “force” that is pushing the agenda along. Far, far too many who push for standards often have very narrow agendas, where this fits their commercial purpose and you get the feeling that they are not as aligned to the broader innovation communities as they should be.
As the need for systematic innovation deepens, establishing common innovation management standards becomes a precondition for sustained value creation in all organizations – longstanding or new, large or small, public or private.
Switzerland is more innovative and entrepreneurial than generally thought. The world holds on to the caricature of Heidi and of utterly dull bankers, evoked by Helmut Schmidt, many years ago: “Europe is not governed by the gnomes of Zurich”. We forget the implications of the fact that the Swiss national hero is the ultimate rebel: Wilhelm Tell; and rebellion is companion of innovation.The strong Swiss franc and the weak state of the economies of its trading partners will make 2012 difficult, but Switzerland scores tangible successes: prosperity, low debt, reasonable growth, public budgets in the black, low unemployement and trade surplus. This miniature model of Europe must be an inspiration for the EU to become what it should be: the world’s most successful region in the 21rst century.
A brand new study by German innovation expert Ili Consulting shows that the advantages of open innovation have been understood and adopted by managers of German car manufacturers and their suppliers.