We really do have this compelling need to have a new cycle of innovation design. A more integrated solution that takes our understanding of innovation and how to manage it, into the realms of ecosystems and platforms in its design and thinking.

To achieve this we need to recognize a significant change we must undertake in our present innovation management. We need to open up our thinking to embrace a new era of digital innovation

Does it make sense? You judge as you read. Extract what makes sense for you, explore where there are thoughts that can be applied to your current innovation set up. Just remember a new innovation design needs to be radical, totally connected and resource rich.

Firstly, we do need to recognize technology is going to be inseparable in what we are doing in the innovation world, going forward. The blurring of our lives, of the breaking down of the different old industry demarcations, the blending of government, corporate and social engagements are all giving increasing voice to each of us as individuals, all happening due to this exponential set of connections. I sense from many this is‘epic’, exploding and life changing, with all of us simply learning to adapt and adjust, moving at speed to align ourselves.

The choice of apps, platforms, the number of connected devices is teaching us new ways of communicating, learning, interacting and extracting different value and needs out of the technology available which is all constantly evolving.

How does a large business keep pace with this exponential connection? Where is the starting point or the necessary change inventions one needs to bring in to understand the gaps and fill the voids, can we back-fill as we equally move forward?

The past business decision was based on evidence, validated and then this was justified and sort of evolved at a steady pace. There is something different presently going on, the sheer scale and impact of how technology is evolving at increasing speed, will need a massive mind shift and radical redesign of our innovation management systems.
Although each organization is having so many competing priorities, the gap between how it is organized today and building these required digital capabilities is getting wider, unless you work through this transformation plan in a clear, purposeful way. It has to begin with a ground-up approach, small experiments that can quickly be scaled up or revised. It needs very hands-on engagement throughout the whole process.

A key need of this digital transformation is going to be asking the question of how we can build in ‘greater agility’ and what is presently stopping us from achieving this. Then it is the agility to achieve better response times to customers ‘needs, to respond to market changes quicker, to translate insights into knowledge and then into the product and service innovations that meet ever-changing needs.

It is recognizing and then facing up to your present ‘pain points’ and the key competitive places that agility, digital understanding and translating this into outwardly facing outcomes will significantly improve your abilities to compete, in often volatile markets. It is shortening the time between understanding and reacting, and this is where digital transformation offers both the ‘return’ promise or becomes the threat.

We are in real need of connecting innovation and digitalization. Digital innovation is the future.

Forming a strategy, roadmap and business case needs really many new considerations

There are many considerations, each organization will be different. Yet all have a common need; the recognition each organization needs to develop its digital capabilities, organization-wide, not stuck in some IT department. It is a total company-wide set of activities that are affected. It is developing the digital capabilities across the organization by transforming the culture, the people’s digital skill set and the structures to get into sync, not just with newly defined organizational goals but also consistently adjusting to the rapid pace of change occurring in the marketplace, aligned to customers evolving needs.

The critical first points to address are the lack of something, be this the resource to undertake such a task, a lack of digital talent residing in the organization or digital savvy, the ability to make this a corporate priority and not leave this to limited pockets of divisions, functions or channels. It needs this powerful syncing and top-level focus and support.

Then we need to encourage and expand the risk appetite, in rapid experimentation and learning, to accelerate the infusion of digital talent, enhance the understanding of soft skills and the art of collaboration, in new teaming, in-goal and process identification and solution solving. Also, in developing greater fluidity in structures, exploring and identification with the needs of new solutions to keep ‘feeding’ this back into the evolving roadmap. All of this needs to establish a new digital rhythm to encourage the flow of knowledge and understanding, to feed back into evolving solutions that will take time to develop and embed.

We are caught up in a technology revolution and the sooner we think “digital innovation” the greater our chances are for some significantly different outcomes that push the boundaries and connect-up to more radical designed solutions. Solutions that our customers will relate to, not because they are more complex, which they will be but because they are connected, adaptive and anticipatory.

The new age of innovation is dawning. Let’s “seize the day”.