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  1. Disruptive vs. Sustaining Innovations: Set Up the Rules Before You Play the Game Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-14

    In this commentary, Dev Patnaik argues that the greatest challenge to innovation is not coming up with good ideas, but the organizational and management issues that these new ideas present. Patnaik has observed that incremental projects and breakthrough innovations require substantially different approaches and metrics. Problems occur when these different approaches are not defined in advance. He claims that when the differences between the two processes are not clear, the success of a “blue-sky” project comes to depend less on the quality of the innovation and more on the quality of the deal that the team can cut. Patnaik discusses three areas where breakthrough projects may need to be managed differently from sustaining projects. (3 pages)

  2. Ciba-Corning Diagnostics Adopts Competency Model to Prepare for Sharp Rise in Product Growth Curve Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-07

    While others were focusing primarily on development process improvement, senior R&D staff at Ciba-Corning Diagnostics, a MA-based firm, were asking themselves whether they had the right mix of management skills to expand dramatically. The world's largest seller of critical care diagnostic systems, and an emerging leader in random-access immunodiagnostic systems, the company's leaders knew that their technical expertise and development process were sound. But they realized that they didn't know whether they had the right competencies to sustain and accelerate the rapid growth of recent years. Ciba-Corning’s response was to build a competency model to help instill a high-performance R&D managerial culture. In the process, they developed tools to help existing managers round out their skill set and to guide teams in specifics to look for in the hiring process. (6 pages)

  3. Information Technology and R&D: Sharing Innovations at Kodak Research Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-07-07

    When Kodak UK R&D switched from a corporate e-mail and workflow system to Lotus Notes, the organization began to consider how Information Technology could be leveraged to increase the productivity of their R&D labs. Kodak UK envisioned a research database of compound documents that would allow scientists and technicians to present their work in a form where rich data could be shared and stored in a master database.The result was the Electronic Lab Notebook (ELN), a shared locus for information about experiments and research. The ELN is an organizational tool for ongoing research, while also serving as a repository for institutional knowledge. In creating such a system Kodak UK R&D discovered the seeds of a number of unexpected changes in behavior, leading to streamlined work on the testing side and a greater collaboration between scientists and analysts. Kodak's Electronic Lab Notebook makes a case for how IT innovations can stir product and process innovations. (4 pages)

  4. Boeing Company Employs Radical Virtual Team Concept to Create a Breakthrough Innovation Locked

    Research | Posted: 2004-06-11

    Rocketdyne Propulsion and Power, a business of the Boeing Company, developed an innovative rocket engine using a groundbreaking model for managing product development projects. Faced with stringent cost, time and performance requirements, Rocketdyne reached beyond the company’s walls to assemble a virtual team composed of world-class professionals focused on a key set of core competencies. The team transcended the boundaries between disciplines and companies, to create one of the first two, new, liquid-fueled rocket engines in the United States in over 25 years. This pilot project demonstrates the viability of an emerging paradigm for collaboration and product innovation. (7 pages)

  5. Peripheral Vision: Detecting Weak Signals and Untapped Innovation Opportunities Locked

    Quick Insight | Posted: 2010-03-09

    On February 24, 2010, George Day kicked off MRT’s 2010 Innovation leadership Guru Series with a presentation and discussion on peripheral vision -- how to sense to changes in the environment and pick up on weak signals that indicate both threats and opportunities. Drawing from his experience with companies such as GE, DuPont, and Mattel -- as well as his book, "Peripheral Vision: Detecting the Weak Signals that Can Make or Break Your Company," he offered guidelines to improve an organization's capability.

  6. Six Levers of Innovation: Creating an Integrated Innovation Organization Locked

    Quick Insight | Posted: 2009-12-19

    In the sixth and final session of Management Roundtable’s Innovation Leadership Guru Series, Robert Shelton, Director, PRTM, co-author of Making Innovation Work, discussed the strategic value of technology innovation and business model innovation levers. While technology innovation levers are used extensively, business model levers are underutilized and can deliver even greater benefits.

  7. Discovery-Driven Growth – A Breakthrough Process Locked

    Quick Insight | Posted: 2009-11-02

    Rita Gunther McGrath, Associate Professor, Columbia University and co-author of Discovery-Driven Growth: A Breakthrough Process to Reduce Risk and Seize Opportunity, discusses strategy and techniques for achieving bold growth at minimal cost and risk. Uncertainty comes with the territory of growth -- different disciplines are required for exploring uncertain areas versus mainstream. Discovery-driven planning (DDP) enables exploration of the unknown while setting clear boundaries and guidelines.

  8. The Two Faces of Platform Innovation – Productivity and Revenue Growth Locked

    Quick Insight | Posted: 2009-10-26

    In the third session of Management Roundtable’s Innovation Leadership Guru Series, Marc H. Meyer, Professor, Northeastern University and author of "The Fast Path to Corporate Growth," discussed how industry leaders have been able to add new revenue streams - while lowering costs - through platform innovation. He provided guidelines and illustrative examples of platforming, building on core strengths, moving into adjacencies, creating new business models, and mitigating risk.

  9. Choosing the Right Adjacency Moves for Profitable Growth Locked

    Quick Insight | Posted: 2009-09-30

    While companies continue to pursue growth opportunities, a recent survey by Bain & Company shows that CEOs plan more than half of targeted growth coming from adjacency expansion, i.e. moving into areas close to those the company already does well. Adjacencies indeed make a convincing business case; they are readily accessible and less risky than “new-new” ventures. Still, not all adjacent efforts succeed. The trick is choosing wisely. Having solid decision criteria and staying close to the core are key.

  10. Leading Innovation in the Great Disruption Locked

    Quick Insight | Posted: 2009-09-24

    Scott Anthony, author of "The Silver Lining" and managing director of Innosight Ventures, discusses how to find new opportunities and successfully innovate despite uncertainty and difficult economic times. He offers insight on seeking and evaluating new ideas, pruning the portfolio, de-risking projects, and learning to "love the low-end."

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