Innovation Part I

The fundamental principles implemented by competitors like McKinsey, Deloitte, and Accenture are ill-equipped to serve the evolving needs of today’s organization.

Research shows that somewhere between 10% and 30% of digital transformation initiatives are successful in generating a measurable return on investment (ROI), and sustaining that change in the long-term.

“We cannot solve the problems we have created with the same thinking we used in creating them.” [1]

“The narrow gauge mindset of the past is insufficient for today’s wicked problems. We can no longer play the music as written. Instead, we have to invent a whole new scale.” [2]

The headaches, challenges, unreliable and inconsistent results are the product of a broken playbook. It’s time we designed a new playbook.

Over the next few posts of this series, we are going to explore this critical problem and the underlying opportunities.

Innovation is the continuous adoption of new ideas.

Innovation is not management. Innovation is exploration. Management is execution. Management and innovation have different cultures, led by different leaders, and must co-exist in harmony.

We can not pick the winners (winning ideas). The winners must be discovered through the continuous exploration of 100s to 1000s of potential innovation opportunities.

To build a Compounding Competitive Advantage, develop internal teams of entrepreneurs exclusively dedicated to the full-time exploration of ideas, and, ultimately, validating new business models. Build Due Diligence Pipelines into an organization and develop Innovation Portfolios of many small, inexpensive bets. This unlocks the opportunity for strategic mergers and acquisitions while also creating economic opportunity for the local areas.

Change begins with the CEO. It is up to her to design the right culture.

Institutional support is required for innovation initiatives to receive the necessary respect of the management side of the organization. The stability a great CEO develops within her organization is critical because innovation exists in continuous uncertainty. Through an effective Culture Design strategy, she is able to establish a certain level of certainty through the delicate balance of execution and exploration.

We’ll talk about Culture Design in the next post of this series.


[1] “We cannot solve the problems we have created with the same thinking we used in creating them.” Albert Einstein

[2] The Designful Company, Marty Neumeier

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