From design thinking to agile to double diamond to lean, there are many innovation methodologies for corporate innovators to gain guidance from. Most often these leaders are left to their own devices to come up with the right amalgamation that will lead to success.
In his fourth commandment, Moisés Noreña explores the importance of finding the right tools to innovate and rolling them out at an established organization. Noreña is the former head of innovation at Whirlpool, Allstate, and Moen. To start, he recommends the Unified Innovation Method created by innovation veterans at Notre Dame’s Innovation Academy. This framework involves five steps:
• Target. In this phase, innovators identify the mission of a project and key outcomes.
• Discovery. The first step of this process involves information gathering, which creates a deep understanding of the market and customer. During the second step, insert articulation, teams analyze trends to postulate what might happen next.
• Ideate. Teams brainstorm, have ideas, and collaborate. This phase also involves bringing in consumers to get their take on new ideas.
• Elaborate. Innovators create a viable offering. “By turning the idea into a concept that people understand, the consumers can react to you and validate the appeal,” Noreña says.
• Launch. In many companies, the product is sent to the business units, and the innovation team is not part of the launch phase. “But in a healthy innovation cycle, I believe you have to be part of it,” Noreña says. “Your presence in this space can help to ensure the product is adhering to the value proposition you identified.”