”The world’s most innovative companies enjoy a premium on their share price”, as to evidence recently shared by Hal Gregersen and Jeff Dyer in INSEAD Knowledge. Investors obviously notice organizations that are willing to take innovative leaps and are ready to compensate them by paying a premium on their share price.
Innovation may be eagerly wanted by both investors and business leaders, but still 80 percent of product innovation efforts fail. In spite of that figure, product features and benefits remain the most commonly discussed challenge when discussing innovation.
Research has however shown that product features and benefits most often don’t add the most value. That is actually rather limited. Instead, innovations in the overall business model, customer experience and the enabling processes are the key contributors.
Next time you are thinking about innovation, look at your whole map of opportunities – involving mega trends, your business model, the customer experiences and the enabling processes – not just the product innovation plan. And – even if you are a senior executive – be out in the field, meet with customers, network, observe and ask questions till you understand what is going on. At least that is what differs the most successful innovators from the rest according to in depth research of Hal Gregersen and his collegues:
-“We were intrigued to learn that at most companies, top executives do not feel personally responsible for coming up with strategic innovations. Rather, they feel responsible for facilitating the innovation process. In stark contrast, senior executives of the most innovative companies—a mere 15% in our study—don’t delegate creative work. They do it themselves. But how do they do it? Our research led us to identify five “discovery skills” that distinguish the most creative executives: associating, questioning, observing, experimenting, and networking. We found that innovative entrepreneurs (who are also CEOs) spend 50% more time on these discovery activities than do CEOs with no track record for innovation. Together, these skills make up what we call the innovator’s DNA. And the good news is, if you’re not born with it, you can cultivate it.”