The innovation management industry is highly fragmented today, which makes it confusing to understand which methods apply to which scenarios, and what the difference is between those doing crowdsourcing, and those doing enterprise programs designed to facilitate business transformation.
As you’ve probably seen & heard by now, John Bessant’s talk on learning the new innovation game wasn’t the only intellectual delight (+ conversation starter) at this year’s Innovation Managers Forum in Bonn. Robert (Bob) Neuhard, Executive Director for Operational Strategic Initiatives at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), delivered an equally rich & entertaining presentation on “new school” crowdsourcing or “Leveraging Collective Genius to Deliver Innovations that Advance Strategic Objectives” at his institution. Below, a summary of this talk, but the full talk is available to watch at the end.
The goal is to move the crowd towards a new direction in our collective thinking to solve a problem.
Whatever you call crowdsourcing and there are many suggestions, the fact is that many communities are coming together, happening on-line, forming around challenges, ideas, projects, non-profits, people and important social and business issues. They are truly organic, feeding off all the contributions
Crowdsourcing has been interesting to me intellectually for some time, it seems to have the ability to help solve vexing questions, real challenges, and connecting different voices, into a community that can open up the fields of opportunity for new solutions. It does have both the potential to point towards disrupting possibilities, extends the concept of open innovation into a wider source of participation from a diverse community not possible to reach by other means as effectively. It can simply connect a ‘crowd’ of people into a common purpose. All in all, if applied carefully it can provide you a leading edge of innovation knowledge and insight.
Thank you for choosing to read this blog! I am wondering, are you reading this on your desktop computer, laptop, tablet, smartphone (while commuting)…or maybe even on your wearable technology. The point I am trying to convey here is that nowadays information is so easily accessible and abundant, it has lost its value. Moreover, the average person spends around 8 seconds before shifting their focus to another source of content.
Are you already on BuzzFeed, checking out the “10 Best Ways To ...”? Here is a fun fact, BuzzFeed is currently the most popular viral website with 150,000,000 unique monthly visitors. These numbers are quite impressive and the question that emerges is how do they manage engagement on such a vast scale? What is BuzzFeed’s secret to successfully creating viral content campaigns and what can BuzzFeed teach us about improving idea campaigns?
Building a sustainable innovation community is essential for every collaborative innovation program. Doing that is, however, not as easy as one may think.
The typical approach to that is to launch a marketing campaign with e-mails, posters, videos, public announcements etc. in order to raise awareness, inform and motivate everyone to join in. Especially in companies with a history of failure of such or similar corporate initiatives, it is difficult to reach the people, build trust and drive the desired behaviours. Since the participation and collaboration in innovation programs is voluntarily and competes with people’s day jobs, they need to get convinced that their participation is worth spending the time. Instilling this trust and engaging them can be difficult, as people’s opinions and attitudes are largely influenced by their peers of various groups that every human is part of. It is important to understand these influencing factors in more detail, in order to keep control of the development of your innovation community.
Jobs are now part of the fluid, make-it-up-as-you-go-along economy. They are beyond Government control. We, the workforce, have become blasé about the underlying trend towards more lay-offs and more part-time work. But as more people face lay-offs should we be rethinking how we deal with it? Maybe it is an area rich for ideation culture. I hope HYPE will follow up and launch a challenge, along the lines I will suggest below.
First to job losses. Microsoft recently announced plans to lay off 18,000 people. Barclays Bank announced 12,000 layoffs, against a wider background of redundancy announcements in finance. Up until May 2013 the US Bureau of Labor Statistics issued monthly mass layoff data. The service is now discontinued but here is its last summary:
The amateurs are coming! Are you ready?
Over time, we have seen transitions in how goods and services are supplied to buyers. It used to be that you were limited to what you could buy in your local village. With the rise of industrialization and subsequent globalization, choices increased and costs went down. But inevitably, industries saw varying degrees of concentration of market share amongst a few mega firms. With the unfortunate - but understandable - consequence of reducing choices as firms focus on what sells broadly.
Since joining the industry in 2001, I've seen a lot of really good idea campaigns. Many have produced breakthrough ideas, from the most unlikely of sources. But I’ve never seen a campaign which changed the course of history. This next example did just that, and might be the best idea campaign ever run.
Global advisory and research firm Ovum recently forecast 8% annual growth over the next five years for innovation management. Strong momentum, as organizations awake to the cognitive surplus their employees possess.