70% of the most innovative companies are using a dual innovation approach.
100% of the experts surveyed in a German study say that a dual innovation strategy is vital to corporate innovation capability.
64% of companies say that their innovation efforts fall short despite increased investment because of focus on portfolio extensions rather than explorative ideas.
– Digital –
Digital Transformation not only means digitalization of existing offerings and processes, involving a step change in operational excellence or customer experience.
It also means opening entirely new innovation opportunities. These may be smart products, x-as-a-service / data-driven business models or cross-value-chain / cross-industry platforms.
Traditional corporate innovation management systems are overloaded to accommodate for the entire spectrum of Digital Transformation.
– Decreasing life cycles –
Statistics clearly show that not only the average life span of products is decreasing – but also the average life span of companies. This makes successful innovation an imperative.
However, just being excellent in ‘incremental’ or ‘sustaining’ innovation is not sufficient. Inevitably, this will lead to commoditization.
Traditional corporate innovation management systems are usually not designed to innovate existing businesses while in parallel creating new ones – let alone in the light of ever smaller windows of opportunity
– Disruption –
There are many examples in many different industries showing that disruption is only a small step away.
Disruption may come in the form of new business models building on existing assets or on disruptive technologies. These technologies can be physical (such as graphene and nano-coatings) or digital (such as the Industrial Internet or Blockchain) in nature.
Traditional innovation management systems are not capable of balancing defensive with offensive approaches to disruption.
– Volatility and convergence –
Industries are changing faster than ever. Conventional boundaries are blurring.
Examples for emerging industry logics include Smart Cities, Smart Home, Digital Health, Precisicion Farming or Future Mobility.
Traditional innovation management systems are well-suited to exploit and extend existing business logics. But they were not designed to explore innovation opportunities in emerging industries. And they usually fall short in scaling up these ‘unfamiliar’ innovations.
– Innovation Centers –
Recognizing that traditional innovation management can’t keep up with modern requirements, companies set up vehicles to drive explorative innovation.
Depending on goals and scope, these are designed as Innovation Centers, Digital Labs, Incubators, Accelerators or in some hybrid forms.
Usually, siginificant investments were made to support corporate ambitions to keep up with the increasing pace and the changing face of innovation management.
– Insufficient impact –
Today, the largest companies have several hundreds of these explorative innovation vehicles operating all over the world.
However, one rarely hears success stories about big, bold innovations with a measurable financial impact that have been generated there.
Quite contrary: Some global leaders have already shut down their Innovation Centers. And in many companies that still have an Innovation Center, we here more and more voices that these are just some sort of ‘innovation theatre’.
“Radical and disruptive innovation is a top priority for us to stay ahead in the long term.
But how can we avoid compromising the core business and disappointing stakeholders with driving explorative initiative?”
“Innovating and transforming the core business, fostering disruptive opportunities and building platforms / capabilities are equally important but highly imcompatible.
How can we adequately manage all of this concurrently?”
“I have solid operational KPIs that I must deliver on. When explorative innovations yield additional business, I will take care of it.
How can I help – within my existing priorities – to scale up promising explorative opprtunities?”
“My KPIs are related to exploring new sources of growth.
How should my unit be set up and aligned with the core organization so that we can deliver? How can get my ventures receive resources to be able to thrive and scale up?”
“Explorative opportunities may bear high business potential – but also uncalculable pay-off, uncertainty and risk.
How can we balance financial predictability and uncertain options?”
“We increasingly rely on unfamiliar, nimble start-ups and SMEs as innovation partners.
How can we become preferred partner by being best in ‘David / Goliath’ collaboration? How should we co-innovate for mutual benefit?”