Product Innovation Gains Speed Through a Networked Approach
January 13th, 2022 | Case, Pharmaceuticals, Drive Collaboration, Innovation, Working with Connectors & Brokers
Every day, there is another company introducing innovation. A new technology shows up and takes us all one step forward, or a competing product dramatically changes the business ecosystem. In such a competitive and aggressive environment every business must hold its grounds firmly by introducing innovative products and services. SPEED is of the essence! And that is gained through a networked approach.
Product innovation, however, has been seriously challenged for many companies as the pandemic has endured, and top executives are now starting to realize the risk that implies. One industry beats all other. In this article, you can learn how one pharma company excels.
Read this article for more insights on how various industries are doing on innovation: “Innovation in a crisis: Why it is more critical and ever”.
Case: Ideas Lacked Since Start of The Pandemic and speed was slow
The company struggled with product innovation. In the pandemic it had become slower than ever. Some of its employees would even claim, it was non-existing!
The central formal innovation governance mechanisms were unchanged since 2017, but especially the idea generation phases were now suffering with no new ideas having been generated in the last year.
People were worn out by the pandemic and more and more only talked to their small circle of trusted colleagues within their own units, which led to slower idea assimilation across and less creativity. In fact, nothing really happened in terms of new creative ideas. Even though it was high-priority focus with billions budgeted for it!
The Network Offered An Informal and Speedy approach!
It was about time to try a new idea generation approach! – an informal and speedy approach. A networked approach!
The company had previously mapped its informal internal networks including who the key people were across in all the communities, tribes, and groups across its global organization. Who were the go-to-people when it concerned new ways of working, product innovation, external stakeholder engagement and so forth? – and who were the sense makers and early adopters? Not a lot was happening across anymore, so the visibility into who those key people were was limited… but now they knew.
Go-to-People from Across the Organization
So, they decided to assemble a group of 50 go-to-people for Product Innovation from across the organization. From Europe, from Africa, From Asia, and from the Americas. All carefully pinpointed in the data from Innovisor.
The invitation for the virtual meeting was short.
Join us for 30 mins of product innovation knowledge sharing. Only preparation required is to bring yourself and what you know. You and all others are invited because your colleagues across the organization – the word-of-mouth – has peer-identified you as a go-to-person for product innovation. We expect to be blown away.
“We expect to be blown away”.
And they were… in only 30 mins…
- They identified 51 decentral innovation initiatives from across the company. Something would otherwise have taken an estimated two years to uncover.
- They connected the 50 go-to people in 8 focus groups split by interest.
- They allocated budgets & resources to each focus group.
- They agreed a short deadline for each focus group to get back with a plan for acceleration
Simple, Systematic, Low-Cost Approach Leads to Extreme Speed
In essence, the outcome was extreme SPEED in the initial stages of the product innovation process … and at the same time a very simple, systematic, low-cost targeted network building and assimilation of innovation across the key people in the entire group.
Something the company already shortly after harvested the first results from, as it moved the decentral innovation initiatives into its central innovation acceleration funnel, which is a systematic mechanism for conversion of new ideas into marketable products and growth with a wide variety of different people and functions involved in a dedicated community.
In Conclusion… Innovation is a Team Sport
The myth that lone genius makes product innovations happen isn’t true. True product innovation is a team sport, and it gets killed by silo thinking. Great companies understand that challenging times calls for new approaches – networked approaches. Only then can sufficient speed be achieved to excel.