Strengthening Innovation in a Dynamic Environment

The Best of Both Worlds

Certainly, juggling the various directives of an ambidextrous innovation philosophy across a large enterprise is easier said than done. But it can still be achieved by business leaders across industries, from startups to long established brands. Exploring disruptive innovation while maintaining incremental innovation can ebb and flow depending on the present demands of the company and its strategic mission. But having the best of both worlds is an important capability to develop.

These different modes of thought, optimally, can be transitioned to when a company needs to adapt and pivot, whether it’s turbulent or stable times in the market. Boston Consulting Group, in its blog on “Ambidexterity: The Art of Thriving in Complex Environments,” points out that, “Exploration and exploitation require different ways of organizing and managing. Exploration is facilitated by long-term targets, a flexible and decentralized structure, and a culture of autonomy and risk taking, while exploitation typically requires short-term targets, centralization, standardization, and discipline in execution.”

There are various approaches to ambidexterity but nonetheless it’s a critical asset to develop. Ambidexterity, BCG notes, can be achieved through four distinct approaches: separation, switching, self-organizing, and external ecosystem. Separation is the most common approach, which involves structurally separating units that need to deploy different strategy styles (such as an emerging business versus a mature business).

The switching approach, however, tends to be more dynamic. “Initially, an organization must deploy an exploratory style as it looks for a breakout product, service, or technology. Over time, however, it must transition to a more exploitative style in order to scale up and secure a profitable market position,” explains BCG.

When a company needs to employ both styles, there is a self-organizing strategy. “Here, individuals or small teams can choose for themselves which style to employ and switch between them over time. Companies achieve self-organizational capabilities by breaking the organization down into small units and creating individualized performance contracts.”

The external ecosystem approach tends to be more complex but is useful for companies operating in a diverse and dynamic environment. BCG notes, “Companies may need to orchestrate a diverse ecosystem of external parties in order to source the strategy styles they require.”

The Ambidextrous Imperative

In “Balancing Innovation with Ambidexterity,” All Things Innovation first delved into the ambidextrous approach. Innovators have long been tasked with being a flexible part of an ambidextrous team, as part of an organizational cog that can easily pivot and manage tasks on several levels. This ambidextrous approach entails focusing on the big picture for the company when needed, yet at the same time being focused on the small, incremental steps that often define and are necessary for entrepreneurship and innovation.

In “Exploiting the Present to Explore Tomorrow’s Innovations,” we further looked at the broader ambidextrous perspective. Macroeconomic factors in the current environment have now seemed to favor driving new revenue growth projects, whether it be short-term or longer-term investments. This brings up the dilemma that innovators often face: Innovate through exploitation or through exploration?

Looking forward to FEI 2024? The conference, which will be held June 10 to 12, will feature a session called “Zero To N Innovation: Attaining Ambidexterity,” presented by Harsh Wardhan, Innovation Program Lead, Google. The session will explore the assimilation of short-term and long-term process to deliver on both short-term and long-term growth goals. Register for FEI 2024 here.

Embracing Ambidexterity

While it may be challenging for companies to balance these two types of innovation, some organizations have successfully embraced ambidextrous approaches. We asked ChatGPT to select the top ten leaders of the pack. These examples showcase how companies across various industries can effectively manage both exploitative and exploratory innovation activities, allowing them to adapt to changing market conditions and sustain long-term success. Here are ten examples of companies known for their ambidextrous innovation efforts:

  1. Google (Alphabet Inc.): Google is known for its commitment to continuous innovation. While its core business focuses on search and advertising (exploitative innovation), Google X, the company’s experimental division, explores moonshot projects like self-driving cars and other exploratory innovation.
  2. Amazon: Amazon exemplifies ambidextrous innovation through its focus on both improving existing operations (exploitative) and exploring new business models and technologies (exploratory). The company’s success in e-commerce is paired with ventures into cloud computing (Amazon Web Services) and devices like the Kindle.
  3. 3M: 3M is a classic example of an ambidextrous innovator. While consistently optimizing its well-established products (exploitative), 3M also encourages employees to spend a portion of their time on personal projects, leading to breakthrough innovations such as Post-it Notes and Scotchgard (exploratory).
  4. Procter & Gamble (P&G): P&G has a history of balancing exploratory and exploitative innovation. The company is known for continuous improvement in its existing brands but it also invests in research and development to introduce new products and technologies (exploratory).
  5. Apple: Apple, famous for its iterative product releases (exploitative), also engages in groundbreaking innovations. Examples include the introduction of the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, which disrupted industries and created new markets (exploratory).
  6. IBM: IBM has successfully managed ambidextrous innovation by simultaneously optimizing its traditional business in enterprise solutions and consulting (exploitative) while investing in emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and quantum computing (exploratory).
  7. Tesla: Tesla is known for challenging the automotive industry with electric vehicles and energy solutions (exploratory), while also refining its manufacturing processes and vehicle technologies (exploitative) to improve efficiency and product quality.
  8. Microsoft: Microsoft, historically focused on software and operating systems (exploitative), has shifted its focus to cloud computing and artificial intelligence (exploratory). The company balances improvements to existing products with the development of new, transformative technologies.
  9. Samsung: Samsung is a diversified technology company that engages in both incremental improvements to its existing product lines (exploitative) and disruptive innovations, such as the development of new display technologies and mobile devices (exploratory).
  10. Nestlé: Nestlé is an example of a company that balances its focus on optimizing existing products (exploitative) with exploring new opportunities in health science, wellness, and personalized nutrition (exploratory).

Turbulent Times

Ambidexterity is tough to master. As the above list attests, some of the top brands in the world have strived for this strategic approach. Yet even for a larger enterprise, and perhaps because they are a larger enterprise, it is not always easy to distinguish between exploitative and exploratory innovation opportunities, much less capitalize on them. But the ability to explore and exploit is a critical capability to have in the present environment. That competitive environment should only increase in the future.

In their article on the subject, Boston Consulting Group’s conclusion still rings true today: “The imperative to achieve ambidexterity will only rise as technological change and economic turbulence increase the diversity and dynamism of the business environment.”

Video courtesy of Bosch Innovation Consulting

PIE: Get Your Slice of Success

As a young scientist, I thought my job performance would account for 80% of my success at work, with the remaining 20% being attributed to factors such as my rapport with the boss or a stroke of luck. This perspective was rooted in my educational experiences, where effort and performance were seemingly correlated. My parents, too, instilled in me the notion that hard work would guarantee success in life and at work.

I diligently devoted myself to my work. However, over time, I noticed a pattern: Colleagues getting better assignments or being promoted ahead of me. What was their secret? Did they work harder, longer, possess better training, intelligence, or enjoy a closer relationship with superiors?

The answer was none of the above. They possessed knowledge that I didn’t—an understanding of the significance of PIE.

What is PIE?

PIE, which stands for Performance, Image, and Exposure, serves as a crucial framework for gauging and predicting career success. Understanding the distinctions between these factors and, even more significantly, the interplay and proportions among them is key to achieving a sense of fulfillment derived from a fruitful career. The concept of PIE was initially introduced by Harvey Coleman in his book, “Empowering Yourself: The Organizational Game Revealed.”

Performance: Performance is all about the tasks you do every day and how well you do them. For most innovators like me, this is the part they find easy because they enjoy their work. They dive into it eagerly, aiming to do an excellent job.

Performance is the fundamental requirement; if your performance falls short, it becomes a significant obstacle to your career advancement. In such cases, you may need to contemplate a shift to a different profession where your innate talents can truly shine.

Image: Image is essentially your brand, reputation, or how others perceive you. Some of this perception is shaped by your performance, which is the “what” of your job—for instance, being recognized as a top consumer scientist, product leader, engineer, or program manager. Your brand also hinges on the “how,” such as being known for always delivering on time and in full.However, your image can also have negative aspects. If you’re viewed as slow-paced or challenging to collaborate with, it can diminish your brand and hinder your progress.

Exposure: Exposure refers to the extent to which you are visible and known within your organization and industry. It encompasses factors such as networking, building relationships, and making sure that decision-makers and influential individuals are aware of your contributions and capabilities. In other words, does your boss know what you do? Does his boss know? Do people inside and outside your organization know anything about you and your work? If the answer to these questions is “no,” “barely” or worse, “no interest,” your career will not have the trajectory you desire.

The Ratios

In the PIE framework, what struck me the most is that when it comes to getting the best projects and promotional opportunities, Performance, Image, and Exposure are not equally weighted—not even close.

According to Coleman, a mere 10% of your success is attributed to Performance! Only 10%! Image carries a substantial 30% weight, and Exposure commands an astonishing 60%.

It’s essential to note that this ratio doesn’t imply that you should prioritize networking over your actual work. In practice, it means that doing good work is the basic requirement with Image and Exposure working together as amplifiers of your value. Conversely, if your work quality is subpar and it becomes associated with your brand, increased Exposure to your subpar work will further diminish your value.

From Humble PIE to Top-tier Talent

In my opinion, innovators often encounter two common situations that can limit their career growth:

P>I and E: In this scenario, performance may be outstanding, but image and exposure are low. I personally experienced this situation early on, where I kept my head down, hoping that someone would eventually notice my work. If you find yourself in a similar position, the first step is to understand your reputation or personal brand. I’ve found that 360-degree reviews can be incredibly valuable in this regard. These reviews allow you to discover what others think about your “what” (your skills and contributions) and “how” (your approach and behavior). Are these perceptions aligned with your expectations? How would you like to be perceived and known by others?

Once you’ve answered these questions, create a plan to bridge the gap between your current situation and your desired image. Regularly conducting 360-degree reviews can help you track your progress and ensure you’re moving in the right direction.

E<P+I: In this situation, your performance and brand are generally good, but not enough decision-makers know about you. This is career limiting because when it’s time for managers to discuss who is ready for a big project or promotion, you will have no support in the room. There are a lot of ways to address this challenge, you can ask for the opportunity to present your work to a wider audience, ask to work on a cross-functional team, ask for a “flex assignment” that would give you exposure to other teams or leaders, present at a conference, etc. Even volunteering to work on the company blood drive or holiday party can expose you to other leaders in the organization. The point is, don’t limit yourself to one strategy, get creative to put yourself in situations where you will get exposed to a variety of decisionmakers both within and outside your organization.

You may be thinking, isn’t my boss supposed to help me build my image or get exposure? Sure, managers can help, but the ultimate responsibility falls on you. This is one of the key takeaways of my blog post “Layoff-Proof Your Career: The Consultant Mindset.”

Get Your Slice of PIE

In the ever-evolving corporate landscape, sheer performance is not enough to guarantee success. PIE offers a framework of how Performance, Image, and Exposure collectively shape our career trajectories. While hard work and dedication remain integral, they must be accompanied by conscious efforts to build a strong reputation and gain visibility within and outside the organization. Remember, navigating the corporate world is akin to baking the perfect pie—it requires the right ingredients in the right proportions. As you reflect on your career journey, ask yourself: Are you giving enough attention to your Image and Exposure alongside your Performance? By understanding and strategically acting upon these elements, you’ll be better positioned to enjoy a delicious slice of success.

Shaping the Future with Disruptive Technology

The Future Is Here?

Technology seems to be a common thread that connects several disruptive innovations. Perhaps it’s no surprise that at least some of these have been touted before and remain top of mind as they still hold much potential and promise of a better and improved future—a connected and smarter future where home, work and play are blended like never before. Oh, did we mention artificial intelligence (AI)? Certainly, these are technologies that can induce change, where industries can be improved upon, developed and transformed through innovation, from manufacturing and healthcare to finance and commerce and more.

In broad strokes, while perhaps not groundbreaking, several lists we researched on this topic referenced 5G, AI, Blockchain, Internet-of-Things (IoT), and Metaverse as disruptive technologies which will continue to transform the way we live and work as well as shape the future. These are disruptive innovations that will quite possibly change our lives and transform the experience—of consumers and of entire industries—and which will continue to bring about change, both large and small, to society.

“By understanding and harnessing the power of these disruptive technologies, leaders can stay ahead of the curve and drive innovation and growth in their organizations,” says JD Meier, in his blog, “The Top 5 Disruptive Technologies Shaping the Future in 2023.”

Diving deeper into each core category, of course, one might glean ever more specific trends in these disruptive technologies—from quantum computing and AI to the latest in biotechnology. Just what is disruptive technology? Much like disruptive innovation, “Disruptive technology is an innovation that causes major change in the way consumers, businesses and industries operate. A disruptive technology has the potential to replace the existing systems or habits through its attributes that are measurable and superior,” writes Simplilearn in its blog, “Top Disruptive Technologies to Watch Out for in 2023.” Simplilearn’s list of top tech disruptors drills a little deeper and includes:

  1. 3D Printing
  2. 5G and Improved Connectivity
  3. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
  4. Automation and Robotics
  5. Cyber Security Advances
  6. Edge Computing
  7. Virtual and Augmented Reality
  8. Headless Tech
  9. The Rise of “As-a-Service” Computing
  10. The Work-From-Home Revolution
  11. Voice-Activated Searches

Pardon the Disruption: Understanding Disruptive Innovation

In “Defining Disruptive Innovation,” All Things Innovation examined the topic in more detail. Disruptive innovation is often a phrase used to make a splash in the business world. Some may debate that the label has been applied carelessly at times to anyone shaking up the market. Yet, just what makes an innovation disruptive? It depends on your point of view. But some make the case that it still remains a gradual process of change, as a smaller competitor gains a foothold in a low-end or new market, and moves its product upmarket to challenge the incumbents. Disruptive innovation encompasses a transformation at the core of the business and the marketplace.

Speaking of technology, at FEI, All Things Innovation conducted a special roundtable, bringing cross industry, cross disciplinarians together to talk about transformation and how to make it a reality. In “Achieving Transformational Innovation,” these leaders discuss transformational innovation, digital transformation, and the decision making around it, which often can lead to disruptive forces, both technological and otherwise.

2024 Disruptive Innovation Trends

Along with constantly evolving top tech innovations in 2023, why not look ahead to 2024 and beyond? While there are some redundancies to these lists, LinkedIn’s blog, “Disruptive Innovations Coming in 2024: Transforming Industries with Cutting-Edge Technologies,” takes a shot at predicting what might come next. These innovations, of course, will likely drive further innovations in the future.

  1. 5G Technology: 5G technology is set to transform the way we connect and communicate. It will also enable widespread adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation.
  2. Unsupervised Machine Learning: Unsupervised machine learning (UML) is poised to disrupt the field of data analytics, LinkedIn notes. Unlike traditional machine learning approaches, UML can recognize and flag unknown patterns without the need for data training or labeling, which will unlock new insights and improve predictions.
  3. Robotic Accuracy and Automation: Advancements in robotics and automation will bring more human-like intelligence to machines.
  4. Intelligent Tech Revolutionizing Security: Artificial intelligence and machine learning are poised to revolutionize the way organizations approach cybersecurity.
  5. Connected Telehealth Solutions: In 2024, telehealth applications, when integrated with electronic health records and other platforms, will reshape healthcare delivery.
  6. Augmented and Virtual Reality: Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies are becoming more capable and cost-effective.
  7. Hyperautomation: Hyperautomation combines artificial intelligence and machine learning to automate complex business processes.
  8. Edge Computing: Moving processing closer to the user with edge computing will unlock the full potential of AI and machine learning.
  9. Spatial Computing: Spatial computing offers new ways to interact with digital content using gestures, voice commands, and eye tracking.
  10. Software-Driven Innovation: Digital innovation will become a key driver of revenue for enterprises in 2024.

Video courtesy of Bernard Marr

Keeping Your Innovation Career Resilient

The Age of AI

In this emerging age of AI, just how can you adapt and pivot for the future? While no one can completely predict the future of work, business and education, you can better prepare your career to reinforce your valuable skills. A variety of AI tools are in the market and are being used, and the growth of these tools in the future seems evident. One question might be, just how better can we become by embracing and using these new tools?

In a Harvard Business Review article, “5 Ways to Future-Proof Your Career in the Age of AI,” by Dorie Clark and Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, some key strategies emerge. These are “strategies that professionals can deploy to generate unique value, even as AI begins to showcase its prodigious (and exponentially increasing) power. In other words, what can we do personally to stave off the displacement that may happen as a result of AI and future-proof ourselves in the age of intelligent machines?”

  1. Avoid predictability: Just as some corporations have recognized that boilerplate “corporate speak” turns off customers, we may discover the advantage of sounding like ourselves — and embracing our own personality, serendipity, and unpredictability — when everyone else is turning to AI.
  2. Hone the skills that machines strive to emulate: Soft skills matter. Humans are wired to respond to genuine emotions — so actually knowing and caring about what others think and feel, truly understanding yourself, and being capable of creating something machines cannot is an essential strategy to set yourself apart in the age of AI.
  3. Double down on “the real world”: It’s essential to recognize that one thing AI can’t disrupt is our analog, in-person connections with others, so it’s important to carve out time and safeguard those. They represent an opportunity to build connections and gain insights that simply aren’t possible through AI — and thus, they represent a unique competitive advantage we still possess.
  4. Develop your personal brand: The rise of AI doesn’t change the fact, crucially tied to human nature, that branding matters.
  5. Cultivate expertise: It’s valuable to develop recognized expertise in your field. Even if AI performs “first draft” functions, it still has to be double-checked by a trusted and reliable source. If that’s you, you’ll continue to be sought out because you have the authority to vet AI’s responses.

Career Insurance

In “Layoff-Proof Your Career: The Consultant Mindset,” All Things Innovation contributor Gail Martino, Senior Program Manager, Unilever, discusses how a conversation with a vice president early in her career mapped out some critical advice that she termed, “The Consultant Mindset.” See Martino’s column for some advice on how you can leverage that mindset in your own career.

In “The Future of Work is Reshaping Trends in Innovation,” we posed the question, just what does the future of work hold in store for the business of innovation? This new future of work will be impacted by both talent and business trends taking shape. On the talent side, notes Gartner, is the move towards human-centric work design; a reshaping of the culture; managing in a hybrid world; and digital enablement. On the business side, this also includes the rethinking of the workplace and the shifting of talent and skills.

The Resilient Mindset

Future-proofing your innovation career involves staying adaptable, continually learning, and positioning yourself to thrive in a rapidly evolving professional landscape. Here are some top tips, courtesy of ChatGPT, to future-proof your innovation career:

  1. Embrace Lifelong Learning: Stay curious and commit to continuous learning. Stay informed about emerging technologies, trends, and methodologies in innovation.
  2. Develop a Diverse Skill Set: Cultivate a range of skills beyond your core expertise. Skills such as critical thinking, creativity, adaptability, and communication are increasingly valuable in innovation roles.
  3. Stay Technologically Savvy: Keep abreast of technological advancements relevant to your field. Understanding emerging technologies and their potential applications is crucial for staying at the forefront of innovation.
  4. Cultivate a Growth Mindset: Embrace challenges as opportunities for growth. A growth mindset fosters resilience and a willingness to take on new and unfamiliar tasks, which is essential in an evolving professional landscape.
  5. Network Actively: Build and maintain a strong professional network. Attending industry events, engage in online communities, and connect with professionals across disciplines to stay informed and open up collaboration opportunities.
  6. Seek Cross-Functional Experience: Gain experience working across different functions and disciplines. Exposure to diverse perspectives and methodologies will enhance your problem-solving abilities and make you a more versatile innovator.
  7. Be Agile and Adaptable: Develop the ability to adapt quickly to changes. The business environment is dynamic, and being agile in your approach to projects and challenges is an asset.
  8. Showcase Results and Impact: Clearly communicate the impact of your work. Highlight tangible outcomes and results to demonstrate your contributions to the success of innovation projects.
  9. Foster a Collaborative Mindset: Collaborate with colleagues, both within and outside your organization. Innovation often thrives in collaborative environments, and the ability to work effectively in teams is a highly valued skill.
  10. Stay Ethical and Responsible: Be mindful of ethical considerations in innovation. As technology evolves, ethical issues become more prominent. Demonstrate a commitment to responsible innovation and consider the broader societal implications of your work.
  11. Be Resilient: Innovators often encounter setbacks and failures. Develop resilience and the ability to learn from failures, using them as opportunities for improvement and growth.

Think Like A Futurist

By incorporating these tips into your career development strategy, you can enhance your resilience, adaptability, and effectiveness as an innovator, positioning yourself for long-term success in a rapidly changing professional landscape. One more piece of advice: Fast Company’s Stephanie Vozza, in an article on the future of work, advises that one think like a futurist when it comes to future-proofing your career: “Future-proofing your job means always thinking two or three steps ahead.”

Video courtesy of The Way We Work, a TED series

Innovation Principles, 3/7

“In order to improve your game, you must study the endgame before anything else.”
—José Raúl Capablanca

It can be both costly and detrimental to a project when fundamental questions about idea viability, scalability, or profitability emerge late in the game when we are already deeply vested and financially committed. The intent of the proposed end-to-end product innovation framework is to augment understanding of interdependency between and within opportunity incubation and product delivery milestones. Key incubation and product delivery steps are tailored to address uncertainties and progressively mitigate the main risks while building confidence toward the desired outcome.

Tradeoff between risks reduction and confidence build during the project progression and investment ramp-up.

The framework consists of two principal parts: (i) opportunity incubation—the innovation spiral—and (ii) product delivery—stage-gate product development (see image below). It is imperative to understand and be prepared for the essentially different characters of these two framework parts yet remain aware of their symbiotic affiliation.

Opportunity incubation is based on the Front-End of Innovations (FEI) process that reflects human-centered, design-thinking principles plus additional elements necessary to support concept readiness for the product development. Opportunity incubation is an iterative effort. It is represented here by a spiral where an opportunity is incubated through nine causally related but functionally distinct steppingstones. Also note the holistic character of the incubation process involving everything from empathic understanding of customer needs via technical solutions and a fabrication approach to a business case and the go-to-market strategy. The holistic and iterative nature of an innovation incubation strive is what calls for an entrepreneurial mindset and perhaps explains how an entrepreneurial perspective contrasts with the views of subject matter experts. Product development readiness via iterative incubation is achieved once we establish the objective evidence and sufficient confidence that our solution is feasible, desirable, scalable, and business viable.

End-to-end framework of innovation and new product development continuum.

The product delivery phase begins upon completion of thorough front-end incubation work. It could be conceptually portrayed as a “linear” stage gate process consisting of parallel “swim lanes” associated with different cross-functional work streams. No new product or service development is ever truly linear; however, a rigorous, holistically incubated solution should maximize the chances for a reasonably predictable and committable product development. Another key element of the product delivery phase is the conjoint development of a product, operation processes, and a go-to-market commercial preparation. Conceptually, these are represented by parallel swim lines for R&D, marketing, and operational processes. Depending on the product and industry, different cross-functional swim lanes will be applicable.

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”

—African Proverb

Maximizing Success

It takes a village to bring a new product to market. In corporate settings, cross-functional competencies are usually available and well-defined; however, effective and efficient execution remains a challenge. A realistic and clearly defined project scope in combination with competent and agile cross-functional leadership is key.

In addition, team dynamics and motivation, as well as a sense of ownership and quality of deliverables, often play an instrumental role in success for timely execution in a corporate setting. Concurrent product, process, and customer development could be the foundation for the shortest time to market when developing transformational or novel physical products. A clearly defined RACI matrix further facilitates timely, effective, and efficient cross-functional collaboration and co-development.

In a startup environment, quality, finance, distribution, supply chain, legal, and other cross-functional necessities still need to be effectively addressed in the face of typically limited resources. As such, startups are good learn-by-doing environments that often require team members to wear multiple hats on a daily basis.

At the end of day, we do all this to maximize the probability of doing it right the first time and therefore prevailing by a successful business offering under the shortest timeline and lowest development cost.

Editor’s Note: Selected topics from Milan Ivosevic’s book, Eureka to Wealth, will be featured as part of this Innovation Principles series in the following months:

  1. Introduction (Oct. ’23)
  2. Entrepreneurial Perspective: Human-Centered Design Entrepreneurship(Nov. ’23)
  3. Entrepreneurial Perspective: End to End Product Innovation Framework (Dec. ’23)
  4. Opportunity Incubation: The Innovation Spiral (Jan. ’24)
  5. Opportunity Incubation: Business Case (Sizing the Opportunity and Go / No Go check) (Feb. ’24)
  6. Product Delivery: Development Strategy (Mar. ’24)
  7. Product Delivery: Delivery Effectiveness (Apr. ’24)

Inviting Interdisciplinary Innovation Collaboration

Fresh Perspectives

Looking outside one’s specific field can create inspiration, help problem solving and fuel creativity, and thereby support the innovation process. In the blog, “Why Interdisciplinary Collaboration Is Important,” Collaboratory outlines some of the ways that an interdisciplinary approach to scientific study, including innovation and other fields, may give the team an opportunity for growth and development.

  1. Interdisciplinary Collaboration Opens Your Mind to New Possibilities: When you bring together experts from across disciplines and fields, you can get something unique: a whole new way of thinking about an issue that no one person has ever considered before.
  2. A Cross-Functional Team Can Give You a More Holistic View of Your Research: One of the biggest challenges in any research project is being able to see the big picture. Many have found that one of the most effective ways to improve their ability to see that is to work with a cross-functional team.
  3. Working With People from Different Backgrounds Exposes You to New Skills and Perspectives: It can be helpful to learn new skills and perspectives from people with different backgrounds than you. Working with individuals who have different experiences and knowledge bases than yours can also help you see things in a new light.
  4. Your Research Team Will Work Better with Interdisciplinary Teams: An interdisciplinary team is made up of people from different fields who work together on one project. This allows them to collaborate early in the process, when there are still many questions about what the best approach might be for collecting data and analyzing results.
  5. Interdisciplinary Collaboration Encourages Creativity and Innovation: By working across disciplines and collaborating with experts in different fields of study, you will be exposed to new ideas and different ways of thinking that can help you take a fresh look at your work.
  6. Interdisciplinary Collaboration Can Take You Out of Your Comfort Zone: You learn what it’s like to work with people who have different backgrounds, different perspectives and different ways of doing things. Working across disciplines expands your network, making you a more well-rounded professional; it helps you develop new skills; and it makes you better as a researcher.

The Power of Partnerships

An interdisciplinary approach to innovation has similarities to exploring partnerships and open innovation initiatives outside the company’s internal systems. External partnerships and collaboration can fuel the innovation process and take research into new directions. In “External Partnerships Fuel Innovation,” All Things Innovation’s Seth Adler discussed this topic with Eric Agdeppa, R&D Director, Innovation, BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company). Agdeppa presented a session at FEI in partnership with Cummins that was centered on how do you look outside of your four walls of your industry to de-risk innovation.

In “Balancing the Innovation Partnership,” All Things Innovation looked at the delicate balancing act that startup and corporate partnerships entail. Certainly, there are challenges and opportunities from both perspectives. But it can ultimately maximize innovation success for both partners.

Pushing the Boundaries

Interdisciplinary collaboration, which involves individuals from different disciplines working together, can significantly support the innovation process in several ways, as detailed by ChatGPT:

  1. Diverse Perspectives: Interdisciplinary teams bring together individuals with different backgrounds, expertise, and perspectives. This diversity fosters a rich pool of ideas and approaches, leading to more innovative solutions.
  2. Holistic Problem Solving: Complex problems often require a holistic understanding. Interdisciplinary collaboration enables teams to consider problems from multiple angles, addressing various aspects of a challenge and promoting comprehensive solutions.
  3. Cross-Pollination of Ideas: Collaboration across disciplines facilitates the cross-pollination of ideas. Concepts, methods, and insights from one field can inspire creative solutions in another, leading to novel approaches that may not emerge within a single discipline.
  4. Innovative Synthesis: Interdisciplinary collaboration encourages the synthesis of knowledge from different domains. This blending of ideas can result in innovative solutions that draw on the strengths of each discipline, creating a more robust and effective outcome.
  5. Increased Creativity: Exposure to different ways of thinking and problem-solving enhances creativity. Interdisciplinary collaboration stimulates a creative environment where team members can challenge assumptions, explore unconventional ideas, and push the boundaries of innovation.
  6. Effective Communication: Collaborating across disciplines requires effective communication. Teams must translate complex concepts into understandable terms for individuals outside their field. This skill promotes clearer communication, which is essential for successful innovation.
  7. Accelerated Learning: Interdisciplinary collaboration provides opportunities for continuous learning. Team members can share their expertise, learn from each other, and acquire new skills, leading to a more adaptable and knowledgeable team.
  8. Enhanced Problem Identification: Different disciplines may identify and understand problems in unique ways. Interdisciplinary collaboration helps in uncovering hidden challenges and gaining a more nuanced understanding of the issues at hand, contributing to effective problem-solving.
  9. Reduced Tunnel Vision: Working solely within one discipline can lead to tunnel vision, limiting the exploration of alternative solutions. Interdisciplinary collaboration widens the perspective, reducing the risk of overlooking valuable ideas and insights.
  10. Innovation Ecosystem Development: Interdisciplinary collaboration contributes to the development of innovation ecosystems. By fostering relationships between individuals and organizations from various disciplines, a collaborative network emerges, supporting continuous innovation and knowledge exchange.

Staying (Inter) Disciplined

Embracing interdisciplinary collaboration can be a key driver for successful and sustainable innovation. Interdisciplinary collaboration supports the innovation process by bringing together diverse perspectives, pushing the boundaries of research and development and perhaps creating a fresh vision and different approaches that can support the project. One way to constantly innovate is to be open to looking outside your own field of study. You never know when inspiration will strike.

Video courtesy of Fast Company

Embracing Open Innovation

Opening Closed Doors

Creating open innovation to form a culture of resilience and communication is not without its opportunities as well as risks. It might not be the solution for every company. Yet the rapid pace of technological development calls for new ecosystems to be developed.

As Lead Innovation notes in its blog, “Open Innovation vs. Closed Innovation,” ever shorter product life cycles, uncertain market demand, and rising research and development costs can impact and narrow the solutions being sought in-house. “Effective implementation of open innovation requires open communication, productive collaboration, and a high level of commitment from all participants. The organization must provide the right support to drive the process and encourage all participants to share their ideas. At the same time, the organization should also be able to use external contributions effectively.”

These open innovation strategies should complement the strategic portfolio of the enterprise, open the company to new ideas and knowledge, and enhance the overall efforts of the innovation team. One should not confuse this with merely distributed innovation, advises Lead Innovation. “Open innovation is more than crowdsourcing or accelerator programs. To commercialize the innovations, companies create business models and disseminate the innovation.”

Unlocking Growth

All Things Innovation looked at this topic recently, in “Choosing Open Innovation for A Positive Collaboration.” Creating new pathways to growth, open innovation can be a key tactic that a company can use to open new doors, spark ideas and foster positive collaborations. Harvard Business Review noted that companies that partner must put aside their differences and work together for the benefit of all.

In “Unlocking Growth Through Innovation,” All Things Innovation further examined how innovation of all types can unlock growth. The business world is changing quickly for innovators and there is a growing and ever-present imperative to keep up. Business model transformations and digital initiatives are accelerating the pace of change. Innovators must stay nimble to remain competitive. Pursuing growth through innovation requires a balancing act in today’s environment. Innovators must anticipate change and keep the long-term view in mind while at the same time delivering on short-term goals. Having the right strategies in place is key to the foundation of growth through innovation.

External Advantages

Open innovation, a concept originally introduced by Henry Chesbrough, involves leveraging external sources of ideas, technologies, and expertise to complement internal innovation efforts. Per ChatGPT, here are ten key benefits of open innovation:

  1. Access to External Expertise: Open innovation allows organizations to tap into a broader pool of knowledge and expertise by collaborating with external partners, including experts, researchers, and other organizations. This can lead to a more comprehensive understanding of complex problems.
  2. Increased Creativity and Diversity: Collaborating with external entities introduces diverse perspectives, ideas, and approaches. This diversity can enhance creativity and innovation by challenging internal assumptions and bringing in fresh viewpoints.
  3. Accelerated Time-to-Market: By incorporating external contributions, organizations can accelerate the development and implementation of new products, services, or solutions. This speed-to-market advantage is crucial in rapidly changing industries.
  4. Cost Savings: Open innovation can be a cost-effective strategy. Instead of investing heavily in in-house R&D, organizations can leverage external resources, reducing the overall cost of innovation. This is beneficial for smaller companies with limited internal resources.
  5. Risk Mitigation: Collaborating with external partners can help organizations share the risks associated with innovation. When multiple entities contribute to a project, the burden of failure is distributed, reducing the financial and operational impact on any single organization.
  6. Access to New Markets: Open innovation can open doors to new markets by leveraging the distribution channels, customer bases, and market knowledge of external partners. This can be particularly advantageous for entering unfamiliar or international markets.
  7. Enhanced Flexibility and Adaptability: Open innovation fosters a more flexible and adaptable organizational culture. Organizations can quickly respond to market changes and technological advancements by leveraging external expertise and resources.
  8. Improved Problem Solving: External collaborators may bring unique insights and alternative problem-solving approaches. The collective intelligence derived from diverse perspectives can lead to more effective and innovative solutions to complex challenges.
  9. Ecosystem Building: Open innovation encourages the development of innovation ecosystems, where various entities collaborate to create value. This ecosystem-building approach can lead to sustained innovation over the long term.
  10. Brand Enhancement: Engaging in open innovation can enhance an organization’s reputation as an innovative and forward-thinking company. Collaborating with external partners and contributing to shared innovation can positively impact the brand image.

Beyond The Routine

Embracing open innovation can be a strategic advantage in today’s dynamic and competitive business environment. Open innovation offers several benefits such as access to external expertise, increased creativity and diversity, accelerated time-to-market, cost savings, and risk mitigation, among other factors. Lead Innovation puts forth a few key tips to further embrace open innovation:

  • Nurture relationships: In corporate open innovation, relationships with external parties must be nurtured and managed. An open innovation culture requires a deep understanding of the needs and interests of all stakeholders in order to set the right priorities and solve problems.
  • Question routines: Decision-making processes need to be adapted to create room for innovative ideas and make decisions faster. Collaboration with external partners will most likely require a paradigm shift in processes and decision-making.
  • Top-down and bottom-up: It needs the support of both managers and employees. Managers must instill confidence in innovative ideas, and employees must be given the necessary freedom in innovation projects.

Video courtesy of Edison365

Behind the Ad Screen: Machine Learning as Your Campaign Conductor

As a data scientist working in the business world, many times have I nodded my head sagely as someone on the other side of the table said smart-sounding sentences about how we needed to account for the working cost of capital as we amortized the operating margins perpendicular to the inventory turns. Or something like that. Those are definitely all terms that I’ve heard, but likely they don’t fit together quite like that.

I imagine that is how data scientists sound to you, business executive. But let me assure you, everything is OK. When you hear our side of the table jargoning away and you get the general drift, but aren’t quite sure specifically what we mean, neither do we. For example, we data scientists frequently talk about using machine learning algorithms for some predictive purpose, say, optimizing an ad campaign. Sounds impressive? Well, it’s a lot like saying we’ll cure you of a disease using medicine. Machine learning isn’t a specific technique, it is a wide range of tools, many of which are very different from one another, but all are used to predict and classify.

Machine Learning (ML) in a nutshell: ML, a branch of artificial intelligence, enables computers to learn from data and improve over time. In business, it’s a tool for making data-driven decisions, optimizing ad campaigns by analyzing past performance and predicting future success, thus maximizing campaign effectiveness.

An Algorithmic Journey

Today’s efforts at ad campaign optimization are SpaceX satellite launches compared to the horse-and-buggy targeting efforts of a generation or two back. In mass media, marketers would rely on focus groups and surveys to identify their target audience; then they could buy ads in markets and on shows that skewed ever so slightly toward that audience. A big chunk of mass media ad spend fell on uninterested ears.

The catalog retailers had it a little better, relying on records of who had ordered before. Back in the 1960s they commonly used RFM targeting: Recency, Frequency, and Monetary value. Imagine a simple world where your customer base is half composed of A-list customers who have a 50% chance of buying in a month and half B-list customers with only a 20% chance of buying. Targeting all your customers would result in 35% of them purchasing. A simplistic version of RFM, let’s say targeting only customers who purchased in each of the last three months, would yield a segment of customers comprising 94% A-listers (I’ll spare you the math).

Over time, the field of “database marketing” grew… not to market databases, but to use databases to market to everyone. Data resellers would scour public records, learning about consumers’ car purchases and home values. Magazine subscription information would be sold to compile profiles of consumers’ interests. Data analysts would pore over this data, manually building predictive models to target the best prospects and screen out those unlikely to buy, boosting ROI primarily by cutting the cost of marketing.

Along came loyalty cards, giving consumers a small discount on some items in exchange for an ability to track all their purchases. Soon followed by e-commerce sites, where not only were purchases easily tracked, but items viewed and not placed in the cart. Recommendation engines started working overtime to find similar or complementary items to increase average order size. “Retargeting” campaigns would market items that seemed like they had been of interest but had not been purchased.

And at last we come to the modern day, where we talk about machine learning the way we talk about our cars; something we feel we understand fully, but how many among us can clearly explain the functioning of a cam shaft or a differential?

Camshaft in a nutshell: A camshaft is a rotating cylinder used in internal combustion engines to open and close intake and exhaust valves, synchronizing the engine’s operations.

Differential in a nutshell: A differential is a gear mechanism in automobiles that allows wheels to rotate at different speeds, enabling smooth turning and enhancing traction control.

But we can still drive our cars just fine. And so too with Machine Learning. Exactly how the machine makes its determination of who sees a digital ad is beyond human understanding. Take a moment to think about vast data held in the gestalt databases of Google, Facebook, Amazon, Apple, and others; what you feel now is probably the same awe that astronomer Carl Sagan sensed as he thought of the cosmos itself!

The massive volume of data is now far beyond the ability of human analysts to build models by hand. Data scientists design machine learning algorithms to look for patterns too complex and subtle for us to understand, but no less real than the demographics and RFM of yesterday. The algorithms toil endlessly, searching the massive haystacks for needles, and finding them even if the needles are made of hay! Down deep the algorithms are using the same fundamental concepts that you did when drawing that “line of best fit” on a scatterplot in that one statistics class from business school, but doing so with rocket boosters.

Optimizing the Ad

A prospective customer is scrolling on Instagram or reading a blog; an algorithm, in a fraction of second, matches the data-driven profile of the user with the ad best suited. The next time your marketing team launches a new campaign for your new bronze-coated reticulating widgets, watch the targeting in action. The digital marketing manager will load the campaign into, say, Facebook and the frontline metrics, like click-through rate on digital ads, will start low, and hour-by-hour over the first couple of days you can watch the reported metric creep up.

Perhaps you are paying $5 for every thousand impressions of your ad. When the click-through rate (CTR) starts at 0.2%, you are concerned. That’s two clicks for every five bucks, but your marketing analyst told you to expect only perhaps one in twenty clicks to yield a sale, and each transaction will yield only about $10 in gross profit. Twenty clicks to make $10, but two clicks costs $5… you do the math and figure you are paying $50 to make $10.

CTR (Click-Through Rate) in a nutshell: CTR is an important metric in digital advertising that is calculated by dividing the number of clicks an ad receives by the number of times it’s shown (impressions). A higher CTR, all other things being equal, indicates a more effective ad.

But the algorithm starts to understand that users who are men in their 20s and early 30s are the more likely responders. The CTR pushes up to 0.5%. Now 1,000 impressions yields 5 clicks, so just $20 to get a sale.  Still losing money, but much improved.

The algorithms peer into the demographics, activities, and interests of those who responded compared to those who didn’t. Subtle relationships emerge. City-dwellers into tech hobbies respond. Users in rural communities who own foreign cars. Californians who travel frequently. The CTR surges to 2%.

Five dollars buys a thousand impressions which yields 20 clicks which generates one sale which is worth $10. The campaign has surged from a disaster to tremendous ROI. Gradually the CTR pushes up toward 2.3% as the algorithms further refine their profiling and settle there for the remainder of the campaign.

Well done. Congratulations! (I’m speaking to the algorithm, of course.)

Finding the Patterns

And with online attribution modeling, algorithms not only optimize the match of ad to prospect, they can shift budget from one channel or platform to another. A step higher up and marketing mix models analyze the patterns over the last two or three years, offering suggestions on strategic marketing and quarterly or annual budget allocation.

Whether the underlying model for any given effort is a random forest or uses gradient boosting or relies on cosine similarity – those are all real terms, by the way, speakers of working capital and internal rate of return – is less important than the outcome: The algorithms find, and implement, patterns. And they do it really well. This is everything you need to understand. So when talking with the marketing team, you can nod your head wisely. At first you faked it, but now you’ve maked it. Congratulations. (This time I’m speaking to you.)

For more columns from Michael Bagalman’s Data Science for Decision Makers series, click here.

Operationalizing Ideation Through Idea Management

Ideas, Managed

Idea generation is just one step in the innovation process. But just how can one manage the flow of ideas, and ultimately generate workable and measurable ideas that turn into actual solutions? Itonics, in its blog “The Ultimate Guide to Ideation,” looks at the difference between ideation and a more structured idea management process: “While ideation generally describes the creative, multi-stage methodology of idea generation, we understand idea management to be more of an operational process in the corporate context for the systematic generation, enrichment, evaluation, and management of ideas in all phases of the innovation process.”

Itonics further notes that idea management aims to generate, assess, and improve ideas that contribute to an organization’s innovation strategy. This includes the prioritization and implementation of ideas. Idea management can occur through a centralized or decentralized process. Centralized idea management allows an entire organization to engage in the process, whereas decentralized idea management allows different teams or business units to manage their own ideas. Perhaps one can sum up that idea management takes a more collaborative approach to the creation of ideas process, a process that can involve both internal and external stakeholders.

This ideation/idea management process can be broken down into several components, Itonics recommends. This may also depend on the roles of each member of the ideation and innovation team.

  1. Choose a challenge or opportunity space
  2. Set up an ideation challenge
  3. Define phase-gate process
  4. Generate and validate ideas
  5. Transform ideas into concepts
  6. Implement the promising ventures
  7. Reward and recognize

Perhaps most challenging, Itonics points out that ideation still needs to be measured in some way to gauge success. Idea management must have a strategic basis and so one must justify and align activities with desired future goals. This in turn leads to “actionable innovation metrics that must be relative (input/output) and time-bound to identify actual progress. They should relate to specific goals that provide direction for innovative activities. Based on these characteristics, actionable KPIs indicate possible directions for change. This means either taking action to increase participant engagement or to improve process efficiency and effectiveness.”

Fueling Innovation

All Things Innovation recently looked at “Generating Innovation Through Ideation.” Ideation is often confused with innovation. Both innovation and ideation are often connected by the organization’s research and development efforts. Ideation, then, is a creative stage of the innovation process where new ideas and concepts are generated. Innovation involves the process of turning those ideas into doing something new or faster, better and cheaper. Ideation fuels innovation.

In “Create A Blueprint for Success With Innovation Frameworks” we further examined various innovation frameworks and management structures that start with ideation. It’s not enough anymore to just throw an idea onto the wall and hope it will stick. Instead, these flexible and agile frameworks are a strategic structure designed to give the enterprise and the innovation team the ability to tap into ideas. One can then evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each idea, sharpen the decision-making around each idea generated and build strategies to turn them into value-generating opportunities.

Making an Impact

Idea management plays a crucial role in the ideation and innovation process, providing a structured approach to collecting, evaluating, and implementing ideas. We asked ChatGPT to outline key benefits of idea management in the context of innovation:

  1. Systematic Innovation Process: Idea management provides a systematic and organized approach to the innovation process. It helps teams move from random brainstorming to a more structured method of generating, capturing, and evaluating ideas.
  2. Idea Generation: One of the primary benefits is the facilitation of idea generation. By encouraging employees to contribute ideas, organizations can tap into the collective creativity of their workforce, leading to a diverse range of innovative concepts.
  3. Employee Engagement: Involving employees in the ideation process through idea management fosters a sense of ownership and engagement.
  4. Identification of Promising Concepts: Idea management allows for the systematic evaluation of ideas to identify those with the most potential for success. This process helps organizations focus their resources on the most promising and viable innovations.
  5. Efficient Resource Allocation: By prioritizing and selecting the most promising ideas, organizations can allocate resources more efficiently. This ensures that time, money, and effort are directed toward initiatives that are more likely to yield positive outcomes.
  6. Continuous Improvement: Idea management supports a culture of continuous improvement by encouraging ongoing feedback and refinement of ideas. This iterative process contributes to the evolution of concepts and enhances the likelihood of successful implementation.
  7. Enhanced Communication and Collaboration: The idea management process promotes communication and collaboration among team members. Cross-functional collaboration can lead to the synthesis of different perspectives, resulting in more robust and comprehensive solutions.
  8. Risk Mitigation: Evaluating and refining ideas systematically helps in identifying and mitigating potential risks early in the innovation process. This proactive approach minimizes the likelihood of unexpected challenges during implementation.
  9. Documentation of Knowledge: Idea management platforms often serve as repositories for ideas, discussions, and feedback. This documentation of knowledge is valuable for future reference, enabling organizations to build upon previous ideas and experiences.
  10. Cultural Impact: Implementing idea management practices can contribute to a culture of innovation within an organization. When employees see that their ideas are taken seriously and that innovation is encouraged, it fosters a positive and forward-thinking work environment.

Operationalizing Ideas

In the context of ideation and innovation, idea management is a structured way to operationalize the generation of ideas, taking it beyond simple brainstorming and instead creating a framework or formula to build upon. This systematic innovation process engages employees in idea generation. This in turn will help with the identification of promising concepts, streamline continuous improvement, and enhance collaboration, among other benefits.

Video courtesy of Idea Drop

Bringing Collective Intelligence to the Innovation Process

Welcome to the Collective

Collective intelligence can come in many shapes and sizes and is not a one-size-fits-all solution. This is largely determined by group composition and group dynamics. Atlan, in its blog, “Collective Intelligence: What It Is & 5 Reasons Why It Matters!” looks at the history of collective intelligence and pinpoints four types of the concept. “Understanding these types can help us harness the collective’s full problem-solving and creative potential,” notes Atlan.

1. Human-based collective intelligence: This refers to the gathering and synthesis of knowledge, expertise, and resources from multiple human participants to create a form of intelligence greater than any individual could produce alone. It is often facilitated through face-to-face interactions, virtual platforms, or coordinated activities and focuses on leveraging the diverse skills and perspectives of its participants. This can include crowdsourcing, the Delphi method (a panel of experts), and open innovation.

2. Computer-based collective intelligence: This represents the convergence of computational power and large-scale data analysis to produce intelligence or problem-solving capabilities that are beyond the scope of individual agents—human or machine. This could include artificial intelligence (AI), big data analytics, and multi-agent systems.

3. Hybrid systems: In the context of collective intelligence, this refer to the integrative frameworks that combine both human and computer-based intelligence to achieve problem-solving capabilities, creativity, and decision-making. This could range from human-in-the-loop systems, AI-augmented human networks and multi-agent systems.

4. Natural collective intelligence: This type features simple rules yet complex behaviors. For instance, a flock of birds can display complex aerobatic maneuvers through basic behaviors. Local interactions, and feedback loops, also can sustain collective intelligence interactions.

Intelligence Gathering

In “Choosing Open Innovation for A Positive Collaboration,” All Things Innovation looked at one avenue of collective intelligence. Creating new pathways to growth, open innovation can be a key tactic that a company can use to open new doors, spark ideas and foster positive collaborations. Rather than just traditionally rely on the company’s internal resources for research and development, the open innovation mind-set promotes a more external, open-minded approach to developing processes, products and services.

In “Harnessing the Collective Super Mind to Unleash Innovation,” we also looked at the concept of the collective super mind. As Innovation Director, FIFA World Cup 2022, Oscar Barranco Liebana had a pretty tall order—to manage innovation with the goal to deliver an amazing tournament experience in Qatar. At FEI, All Things Innovation’s Seth Adler got a chance to talk with Liebana about the innovation initiatives and processes behind the tournament, the concept of the super mind and more.

Open to Change

In the context of innovation, leveraging collective intelligence can yield numerous benefits. According to ChatGPT, here are ten key advantages:

  1. Diverse Perspectives: Collective intelligence brings together individuals with diverse backgrounds, experiences, and expertise. This diversity fosters a wide range of perspectives, which can lead to more creative and innovative solutions.
  2. Problem Solving: Collaborative efforts allow for the pooling of various problem-solving approaches. Different individuals may have unique insights and skills that contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of a problem and, consequently, more effective solutions.
  3. Accelerated Learning: Knowledge sharing and collaboration within a group can lead to accelerated learning. Individuals can learn from each other’s experiences, successes, and failures, promoting continuous improvement and faster adaptation to changing circumstances.
  4. Increased Creativity: The combination of different viewpoints and ideas often sparks creativity. By encouraging open dialogue and collaboration, collective intelligence can generate novel and imaginative solutions to complex problems.
  5. Efficient Resource Utilization: Collective intelligence enables the efficient use of resources by tapping into the expertise of individuals within a group. This can lead to optimized decision-making and resource allocation.
  6. Enhanced Problem Identification: A diverse group is better equipped to identify potential challenges and opportunities. The collective intelligence of a team can help in identifying issues that may not be immediately apparent to individual members.
  7. Adaptability: Innovation often requires adaptability to changing circumstances. Collective intelligence promotes a dynamic and flexible approach to problem-solving, as diverse perspectives contribute to a more resilient and adaptable team.
  8. Knowledge Transfer: Through collaboration, knowledge is shared and transferred among team members. This not only contributes to individual development but also ensures that valuable insights are not siloed within the organization.
  9. Increased Accountability: In a collaborative environment, individuals often feel a sense of accountability to the group. This can lead to increased motivation and a higher level of commitment to the success of the innovation process.
  10. Greater Acceptance of Change: When individuals are part of the innovation process from the beginning, they are more likely to accept and embrace changes resulting from that process. Collective intelligence can contribute to a positive and inclusive culture that supports innovation.

The Dynamics of Humans & Machines

We live in an increasingly complex and interconnected world. Transforming problem solving, decision-making and innovation to a group experience can be key to collective intelligence benefits and the potential for this kind of sharing and collaboration in the future. This can be applied to important areas such as business and management, science and research, social systems and governance, healthcare, technology and data science.

As Atlan notes in its blog, “As we face monumental challenges like climate change, political polarization, and global health crises, the capability to harness the wisdom and skills of diverse groups—both human and machine—becomes not just beneficial but essential.”

Video courtesy of Big Think