All contributed article articles

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    What I Wish I Knew Before I Joined the Innovation Team


    Innovation is about going fast… or so Matt Mueller thought as an innovation novice drafted onto the team at a major food brand. In this piece, Mueller shares the challenges he wished he knew about beforehand.

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    5 Ways to Strengthen Your Corporate Innovation Scaffolding


    ”You know you’re in trouble when, instead of displaying the fire within, you fear being fired,” writes Mohan Nair. In his latest column for corporate innovators, Nair offers five key insights to build an effective scaffold in any industry.

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    The Demise of an Innovation Team: 5 Warning Signs


    The warning signs “did not appear all at once,” writes a former innovation team member in the US. Rather, “it was a slow and a gradual shift in priorities and resources over time.” Here are her recommendations for avoiding that same fate.

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    Why ‘AgeTech’ is a $9 Trillion Sector You Shouldn’t Ignore


    Rick Robinson, VP of Product and Startup Engagement at AARP, makes a case for opportunities in the growing AgeTech sector.

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    An Idea Canvas to Help Manage Your Innovation Funnel


    The fuel of an innovation pipeline is ideas. But without a good prioritization process, it’s very hard for an innovation effort to achieve any kind of successful outcomes. That’s why Eric Braun, entrepreneur and former corporate innovation exec, created this Idea Canvas. Includes download.

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    The 5 Resolutions of an Innovator for 2022


    Mohan Nair, a longtime Chief Innovation Officer in the healthcare sector, author, and CEO of Emerge, Inc., shares his innovator’s resolutions for 2022.

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    How Consumer Goods Companies Can Turn Everyday Users into Influencers


    Jos Harrison, Global Head of Brand Experience and Design at the consumer packaged goods firm Reckitt, outlines how brands can leverage building positive relationships with the everyday consumer to grow a strong brand recognition and experience.

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    Why Digital Transformation Programs are Not About Technology


    “If you’re a leader expecting a technological silver bullet, a software panacea to all your business problems, without touching your people and processes,” writes Ger Perdisatt of Microsoft, “you’re going to struggle to derive value from a digital transformation program.” Here’s his advice on digital transformation, excerpted from the new book “60 Leaders on Innovation.”

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    Why Well-Run Companies Continue to Fail


    In the 24 years since Clay Christensen’s book The Innovator’s Dilemma was published, Christensen and many others uncovered a long list of reasons for why well-run companies can flounder. Despite these insights, leading companies now lose their leadership positions more quickly than ever before. The key question we must now answer is: “Why?”

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    How You Can Foster a Culture of Conversation (and Why It Matters)


    Communication is not a bad thing, writes Eric Braun of Retail Business Services, but it’s very different from conversation. Inside, Braun offers a case study along with six tips for fostering a culture of constructive conversation in your organization.

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    Cracking the Contract Conundrum


    Nikhil Gargeya and Diana Joseph provide a framework for getting past the initial conversation into concrete action when it comes to large companies partnering with startups. 

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    How to Apply Lean Startup at Big Companies


    Slides on applying the lean startup from the former Director of Digital Innovation at a lighting manufacturer. “Lean startup is not a bible,” he writes, but “rather a recipe book…”

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    Two Big Themes from This Year’s World Economic Forum


    While the pandemic and its repercussions permeated almost every discussion at the 2021 World Economic Forum, two big themes emerged for Imran Sayeed, a regular participant in the event: sustainability and reskilling.

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    Party Lines, Clubhouse, and Reinvention as a Shortcut to Innovation


    Rick Robinson, Vice President of Innovation at AARP Innovation Labs, shares why not every innovation needs to stem from novel ideas — all through the lens of Clubhouse. 

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    5 Lessons from COVID-Driven Innovation at Whirlpool Corp.


    Christian Gianni, the former CTO of Whirlpool Corp., shares insights into how the Michigan-based appliance giant overcame those barriers during the COVID crisis…

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    Twenty Observations on Innovation in the US Dept. of Defense


    It’s harder to innovate in the government than in the private sector — that’s just the way it is — but it can be done. For those leaders and innovators who work inside the DoD system, here are some observations…

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    Why Tapping Into Employee Insights is a Business Imperative


    Organizations need to rely more and more on those employee insights, not least because employees know where the opportunities are.

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    Stop Innovation Superhero Syndrome


    Corporate innovators should avoid falling prey to “Superhero Syndrome,” argues Alex Slawsby, a former innovation director in the aerospace industry. Instead, they should think more like football scouts or orchestra leaders. ”As an innovation leader, you need to be involved in identifying people throughout the organization that can help you achieve something great,” Slawsby writes.

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    ‘What Did I Get Myself Into?’: Jumping from the Private to Public Sector


    Sean Adams, SVP of Innovation Design at a public enterprise fund, made the jump from the private to the public sector two years ago. Here’s what he’s learned…

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    Innovating from Within: The 10 x 10 Laws


    Mohan Nair has run the Innovation Force team at Cambia Health Solutions for 10 years now. He offers 10 rules to follow over 10 years in order to guide a program to success.