To build a pathway in order to  enable more dynamic innovation capabilities one needs to go through Nine Stages. These nine stages are, in my opinion, needed for developing an understanding of your innovation capabilities, so as to make them more dynamic and, as a result, to be at the top of your innovation game.

This “step process,” I believe, gets you to the point of understanding what innovation capabilities are a better ‘fit’ for the purpose, to deliver on your innovation needs on a consistent, repeatable, and evolving basis.

Building innovation capabilities take time; they are complex, highly structured, and multi-dimensional. Any structured approach to tackling innovation takes time and considerable commitment. Any learning involves sensing, seizing, and then transforming.

We are searching for what makes up the present system and what needs to be part of the future to create a ‘best’ innovation capability environment that is sustainable in the longer-term. Those that can be continually ‘orchestrated’ and constantly adapted to meet the strategic need.

We are striving towards a true ‘innovation coherency premium’ in design, knowing what makes up your core dynamic components. The outcomes are to know where to invest, what to dampen down and what aspects can evolve naturally and be ‘taken along’ – as you focus upon the ones that are more dynamic and relevant to your innovation needs.

Each stage  needs questioning and then answering to create specific phases of the journey. Ask yourself the following questions by creating a checklist to start building your own dynamic innovation capability and to understand your innovation fitness and landscape. 

1.Getting Started – understanding the needs & imperatives of innovation fitness

  • Why we must travel this critical path for Innovation.
  • The meaning of dynamic capabilities and innovation fitness landscapes
  • Merging the theory with practical reality to produce new outcomes and positive results.
  • Focusing on resources and performance – why is this important.
  • The problem is knowing what we have and what we really need and seeing the differences

2.The Fuel of Innovation Performance – the dynamics of innovation

  • A sharper, clearer focus on innovation resources to meet the strategic need.
  • What is known about resources to sustain, enhance performance?
  • Knowing and aligning your strategic criteria – for sound innovation approaches
  • Getting innovation within the right context of your business
  • Moving your resources in the right direction takes courage and decisive leadership.

3.Getting Even More Specific – quantification and qualification

  • Recognising the building of scale, change rates, and dynamics that happen over time and why we need to constantly build our innovation capabilities.
  • Developing the resources to meet the need – structured, focused, clarified by bringing out the necessary discussion.
  • An illustrative scenario for a directional innovation fitness landscape map
  • Recognising that resources can stretch  beyond the firm and then bringing these in successfully, in gradual steps. Managing within a more open environment.
  • Achieving mutual dependencies to support; recognising the hindering ones
  • Being aware of the impact of different scenarios in the management of innovation allows for designing a flexible response capability.

4.Building the Innovation Fitness Machine – reinforcing feedback, identifying needs

  • Recognising the current status, spotting emerging patterns, seeing spaces and gaps, and identifying solutions.
  • Beginning the ‘adaptive walk’ to get to higher fitness points needed to compete.
  • Clarifying the complementary resources, looking to embed new routines quickly, and set up follow through approaches.
  • Introducing natural tensions into the system to trigger ‘step change.’
  • Resource dependence climate, culture, diversity, intensity, and uniqueness
  • Reinforcing feedback – watching for dangers, managing the machine capacity, removing the brakes selectively
  • Shifting your resources need not deplete or force other people to compete for them – working through the tensions within teams and silos.
  • Matching resource dynamics with the innovation value chain & life cycle stages helps maintain momentum.
  • Simulation modeling the ‘what ifs’ and ‘why.’

5.The Strategic Architecture – designing the system to perform as needed

  • The step process for designing and executing the architecture design
  • Diagnosing performance challenges and roadblocks – resolving, moving on
  • Lining up the solutions is not a linear process and needs careful management
  • Addressing the effects of intangibles in the Strategic Architecture.

6.The Hard Face of Soft(er) Factors – the hidden power of intangible resources

  • Clarifying the impact of the intangibles and recognising that time, climate, and conditions are significant contributors to innovation activities.
  • The different rivalry types: internal and external, inter-department, inter projects, and working through resolutions to these.
  • Reflecting feelings and expectations, addressing all the different needs
  • Measuring the tougher parts of intellectual capital
  • The real value of your intangible resources
  • Recognising the value of hidden innovation and spotting its occurrence

7.Entering into Competitive Battle – the dynamics of rivalry, the uniqueness of you

  • Recognising, developing, capturing, transforming, avoiding, and outmaneuvering
  • Your point of choosing what, where, how, and when to compete.
  • Building capabilities that are unique to you and hard to replicate
  • Building sustainability into the innovation equation as ongoing
  • Extending the turf, exploiting the situation, pushing beyond, seeking partners.

8.Building and Testing Capabilities to Perform

  • Measuring capabilities through different fitness levels and scale
  • Learning to build capabilities as ‘ongoing’ and evolving for changing needs
  • Re-Structuring the process for dealing with the dynamics of change
  • Knowing the points of impact on performance to enable recognition and reality
  • Managing innovation performance progressively across the spectrum of business need through testing and extending capability learning.
  • Building from personal to the team, to organisational learning, in measured steps
  • Recognising the role of leadership, achieving strategic alignment, and working on broadening out innovation competence at different organisational levels.

9.Keeping the Innovation Fitness Wheels Turning, keeping your eyes on the road

  • Resolution of conflicting goals, control, and structure
  • Dissecting conflicting positions, resolving the impasse
  • Knowing the limits of human engagement
  • Goals, controls, and measurements can dominate and strangle
  • Keeping the measurements simple and clear
  • Managing innovation as a critical strategic resource
  • Merging the results into a greater alignment to strategy and approaches

The end result is looking to generate your innovation fitness landscape. If you need any coaching help, advice, or mentoring through this process, just get in touch with me here