The area for innovation or starting point is typically defined by the business owner or senior manager. However, we can help to define a working starting point where needed.
Pre-work ensures that the process is primed and informed with the quantified current position: market, technology, IP, competitors, legislation, manufacturing and quality issues, white space etc
A team is assembled that represents all the relevant parts of the target business area.
The team creates a map of the business activities/process steps within the matrix scenario.
This output is a visual representation with notated elements of the area under consideration and it reveals the interconnectedness of the elements and the thinking and (business) psychology of the current business.
The process also exposes the opportunity areas and/or the gaps in knowledge – often these may already be known to one or more team members but not always articulated.
The next stage is to create ideas around the identified opportunities. A variety of tools and approaches ensure team creativity is harnessed enabling new insights and ideas to be shared with full participation. Political considerations or over dominance by part of the team is reduced to encourage free-thinking. Asking questions for clarity is a route to maximise further idea production and avoiding less productive challenges.
The visualization techniques we harness have proved to be powerful and often help reshape participants mind-set around problems. We have found that this stimulates creative thinking and generates novel insights. This holistic approach, preparative work, the visual interconnectedness map (matrix) and the emergence of the opportunities and knowledge gaps, primes the following creative steps. It also keeps the whole process aligned around the business or target activity.
Typically in follow-up sessions with team members or others the ideas are worked further, classified and quantified to establish those for further action and maturity into development projects. The output is a range of ideas focused on the opportunity areas established in the first stage.
This process has been field tested, refined and proven in companies and academic institutions in Europe, Asia and North America. It is powerful and effective and ensures full participation. An experienced coach guides the team through the stages and ensures full productive engagement. Below is a photo taken from a Holistic Innovation workshop for the Chartered Institute of Marketing as part of their accreditation process at the University of Birmingham Business School (click to enlarge).
Let us introduce you to the power of these techniques in your innovation projects. Speak to us @ Us.