During the first week of February, the BlueCallom team brought innovation leaders worldwide together at the BlueCallom virtual Innovation Thought Leader Circle event. The Innovation Thought Leader Circle series provides a space where a select group of innovation professionals comes together virtually to share best practices, insights around innovation management, and advanced learning in innovation. 

To generate knowledge and share interesting perspectives around innovation in 2021, we invite you to get insights from this lively innovation circle around innovating during a pandemic, overcoming external challenges in this “New Normal,” and supporting innovation culture to prepare for future shifts in the business landscape. 

Entering into a State of Innovation in the New Normal

Technological advancements and digitization are not necessarily enough to transform an entire industry, but the innovative business models that introduce the technology are disruptive. We’ve witnessed how companies have innovated their business models, products, services, and customer interaction techniques during the global pandemic. Innovation is more critical than ever, or as Kevin Minier says, the current status quo is now entering into a “state of innovation”. 

Adapting to the “New Normal” will determine which companies simply survive and which companies thrive. How will innovation look in a post-pandemic world? As pointed out by Robert Cloughtery, companies should expand their innovation vision from short-term fixes to long-term business model innovation.

For example, Hussein Dajani, General Manager of Digital and CX Transformation for Nissan Motor Co. in Africa, Middle East, India, Turkey, and Oceana, discussed how customer experience transformation had been a crucial strategy to meeting customers’ “where they are” in today’s landscape: in their homes (due to lockdowns). “Innovation, I believe, boils down from empathy, from really listening to your customers, seeing what their real needs are, and being able to deliver on that innovatively,” says Dajani.

Shirin Kurtuldu also contributed excellent knowledge on how to capture customer-driven ideas by running a Voice of Customer program and asking your own customers what they want, what kind of innovation they are missing.  

Corporate Innovation is Key 

However, innovating strategically for the long-term in an established enterprise can be difficult, considering bureaucratic measures, regulatory barriers, and risk-averse structures that hold big companies back from implementing transformational changes.

As Hussein Dajani points out, big firms often think from a place of “revenue, dollar signs, and immediate profit,” making short-term approaches more feasible to execute. The focus on short-term profit is a signal that a company is not as forward-thinking as it should be to innovate and gain a competitive advantage over time. The company’s mindset is another key factor.

Axel Schultze, CEO and Founder of BlueCallom, says, “the culture shift from a non-innovative company to an innovative company is a massive change…it’s a significant change in mindset.” The question then becomes, how to create a culture of innovation? Facilitating a culture in which accepting “failing fast is such a key technique to helping with innovation,” says Tony Namulo.

Regardless of whether a company adopts a ‘freedom to fail’ attitude or not, half the battle is pushing a great idea from concept to creation and convincing others of its merit. Circle attendee André Lüscher says, “for every idea, you need someone to convince other people that this idea is great.” An idea won’t make it past the gatekeepers and bookkeepers at each milestone check-in without a product or service champion supporting the idea along the journey to development and commercialization. 

Turn the Pandemic into an Innovation Opportunity 

Due to the pandemic, the nature of work changed. Teams work together in an online and remote capacity. Pointed out by Mikel Mangold, “all this international collaboration that is going on right now is incredible” and is requiring innovation around online collaboration tools to make remote work accessible and productive.

Aside from virtual collaboration, remote work also enables the ability to reach a broader audience. Furthermore, companies can find talents across the global stage. A lot of companies are going to be considering “the global talent pool, in terms of being able to increase the pace of innovation within companies,” says Tony Namulo. Thus, a silver lining to the pandemic is new value creation through the various opportunities presented.

But not only are digital work tools in demand, but digital lifestyle tools are also increasingly important. For example, gyms and the fitness industry are undergoing a moment of reckoning as digital fitness services adapt to meet our new needs, as Laurent Guinand discussed.

The business of education is another industry in a moment of upheaval as online education has been thrown into the spotlight, and online education platforms’ successes might even indicate that online education is the future. Axel Schultze says that “the education system has followed the needs of the industry,” and with changing industries across all sectors, the future is in the hands of the innovators and creative minds. In this way, ‘timing,’ in addition to ‘need’ and ‘technology available’ can be considered the keys to building a successful innovation, as deemed  Tony Namulo. 

400 Million businesses (OECD) may look for a total of 100 Million Innovation Managers during this decade.

100 Million Innovation Managers

Of course, at first sight, it sounds ridiculous. Yet if you take the number of registered businesses around the world plus the enormous growth rate of new businesses it is relatively easy to imagine that 25% of those companies, no matter how small they are, will want at least one person that works on innovation concepts. The fortune 20,000 however, is more like hiring Millions on their own. Of course, there is room to debate the number in both directions. If we consider a 3% investment in innovation, the numbers could also move further up. Who would have thought just 10 years ago that in 2020 we will have 1.5 Billion websites live? And an estimated 100 Million webmasters are handling them.

Gameover for romantic ideation dreams

Now, since we know how the brain is actually composing, processing, and fine-tuning ideas, we can begin strategic innovation management. We know that no idea ever composed was by accident. We know that brainstorming can’t create a single disruptive business model. We know that disruptive innovation takes on average 6 weeks to create. It will not happen in a week nor will it take longer than 12 weeks. With amazing predictability comes manageability but most importantly readiness to invest. Constructing an innovative idea is no longer much different from architecting a new skyscraper. Both have a predictable outcome. All that is opening up new investments. 100 Million Innovation managers become more and more a realistic number.

Now is a good time to build up your experience.

BlueCallom launches its Innovations Management Academy with an orientation webinar on Jan 7 and Jan 18. https://bluecallom.com/certified-innovation-manager-orientation/ We will help innovators, managers, and executives to get their arms around the many counter-intuitive aspects of an innovation lifecycle. It’s already hard enough to find top talents. And that will get even harder in the next few years. Having experience will remain to be a top value in an innovation career. “How many innovation projects did you complete?” “What methods did you use?”. To compete with 100 Million others for a job is equally challenging than trying to get top talents competing with 100 Million other businesses. We interviewed shrimp farm owners in Vietnam, street dealers in Cambodia, car repair shops in Nigeria, and 50+ more businesses. The owners are on average 25, graduated from their local University, and are smart enough to understand that our world is changing very fast. The shrimp farmer considers an AI system to manage the population, the car repair shop an e-commerce system for parts sale, and the street dealer a mobile app to push their daily harvest of ultra-fresh food to sell it the same day. Each one of the innovative concepts is simple at first glance, yet powerful enough to force all their competitors to follow.

Starting January 25, the new BlueCallom Innovations Management Academy will offer four major programs:

Deep Innovation Design Champion – learning all about the methodology
Deep Innovation Design Specialist – applying the acquired knowledge in a project
Innovation Manager – learning to run a full-size innovation project
Innovation Executive – knowing what you can expect from your team

You will find all details here: https://bluecallom.com/imacad/

#innovation #innovationmanagement #openinnovation #deepinnovationdesign #jobs #career #tech #share #hiring

100 Million Innovation Managers

When applying for a job at BlueCallom, you will find the same behavior in the World Innovations Forum and our previous companies. We ignore CVs for more than 15 years now. Interestingly enough, you find the same with Facebook, Google, and many others: “Your CV is of no value” to us. And since not only applicants but also peers are asking WHY, here is a more detailed answer.

Your CV is of no value to us.

  1. People can write in their CVs what they want.
  2. Some applicants even use a professional CV writer to do it for them.
  3. Employee-references can even be legally enforced to be “positive” in some countries.

When lying is not only OK but enforced by law, the value gets down to zero. It’s even worse. We no longer can help applicants why we rejected them due to  “Political correctness” or worse, lawsuits due to XYZ-discrimination (replace XYZ with virtually any reason) have turned employee protection into employee disadvantage.

Your skills are not mission-critical to us.

Skills are things you can learn. And well-developed skills are all too often hard to unlearn. We are an innovative company and a thought leader in the innovation space. What we do today was unthinkable yesterday and is of less value tomorrow. At BlueCallom, you will need to be a life long learner. In the interest of our future development, life long learning of our team is essential. To make that easier, we make learning part of your job. Whatever you did in the past is clearly important and is part of your “experience collection,” which gives you the repertoire for ideas and ingenuity. But any repeat job you did in the past is of no value to us. But ONLY if you are up to par with every aspect of today’s world. Hence, your CV is of no value.

Your decade long experience is counterproductive.

Unfortunately, if you have 10+ years of experience with anything, we cannot afford to untrain your neuro pathways. Untrain and train new things is a massive effort, and we are not yet big enough to have the resources to take care of such a process. You may call it age-discrimination because you know this is a great way out of needing to change, but it won’t help you here.  And therefore, the list of all the jobs and with it your CV is of no value.

We know, in the past 200 years, all the above, very much like your educational degrees, had been essential for your career. But not for us and maybe soon for other businesses. Your education trimmed you to learn and repeat, become good at something, and then develop it to perfection. In the last 50 years, knowledge has multiplied thousands of times, and right now, global knowledge doubles every 24 hours. Learning all that “knowledge” is obviously impossible – all you can learn is where to find it.

What are we looking for if the CV is of no value?

The next two decades will bring major employee advances.

In the next 20 years, we will experience office automation progressing as much as we have seen industrial automation in the past 50 years. Today there are rarely production facilities where thousands of workers march into the plant in the morning and out in the evening. Instead, today, we see long lines of cars leaving the office in the evening and going in, in the morning. Yet this is only because organizations have been evolving that way. In fully automated offices like ours, where customers automatically get their products and pay automatically, no office workers are needed.

We are looking for creativity/ingenuity.

We train our sales force to maximize individuality in customer interaction. They need to be creative, have an amazing attitude, a broad understanding and constantly help get our offering as close as possible to our customers’ dream solution. There is nothing to automate. Our marketing teams are constantly learning about the needs and dreams in the market, new tools, and new techniques. Our marketing needs to be as unique as it can get every day. We don’t repeat campaigns. Even though our product needs to be suitable for millions of innovators worldwide, each configuration, each function, each episode in the process needs to be a perfect fit for a perfect outcome. Each of our products will be definitely unique without being custom made, which would make it unaffordable.

Talent, attitude, openness, and passion for making it a reality is what we are looking for. Everything else, every skill, can be learned by any average human. We know you can become what you envision to become, no matter what it is. A degree, CV, or deep experience wouldn’t make a difference. Please send us an email about why you are interested in joining the company, how you will make a difference, and share your LinkedIn URL. That’s it.

If a job at BlueCallom is not your absolute dream job

More than 50% retire with a bittersweet view when looking back. Sweet because they got used to what they do and are kind of ok. Bitter because they never had a chance to fulfill their dreams. Never had a chance? You have the chance to get your dream job but most likely have never been educated on making it a reality. We had let go of people or never hired them in the first place if we recognized such a situation. And we always helped them to pursue their dreams – as we did.

Our Career Opportunities

 

LINEAR vs. LATERAL

Your innovative brain thinks lateral. Your logical brain thinks in linear processes. That’s why almost all business tools are built in a linear manner – step by step.  But in recent years one business process has sneaked into our business life: INNOVATION. Yet, this creative process is still handled in a linear way: step by step. For instance “Empathize”, “Design”, “Ideation”, “Prototyping”, and “Testing”.  To make it more flexible, iteration is part of the process but that is still between modules and still not lateral.

EVERY IDEA EVER CREATED

Knowing how the brain is actually composing, processing, and fine-tuning ideas, has a profound impact on any type of innovation management process. Today, we know that every idea ever created, was a composition of past experiences. Our brain cells or neuron cells can not create any new idea from scratch. We also know that brainstorming has never created a single disruptive business model. We know that disruptive innovation takes on average 6 weeks to create. It will not happen on any hackathon weekend.

Deeper insights are provided during the education programs of the BlueCallom Innovation Management Academy.
Let us now explore the 10 things that change with Neuro Innovation.


1) LATERAL THINKING

The good news is that we do not need to train anybody with lateral thinking. It is an integral part of our brain’s superpower. All we need to do is creating awareness of what exactly lateral thinking is and how it behaves. Simply speaking, instead of looking at things in a linear process (step by step | learn and repeat), we look at things in parallel and don’t repeat or iterate until it works. When you drive a car you steer the car, look at the street, once in a while in the rear mirror, on the speedometer, hear music, keep an eye on the remaining fuel, look at the scenery – all at the same time. Your conscious, sub-conscious, and motoric mind, work all in parallel. When you watch movies, you follow the story, wonder if certain things are possible, manage emotions, listen to theatrical music, and more.  When you THINK – any thought – you do that in parallel. When you “create”, meaning build and craft anything your brain works many tasks in parallel. Lateral thinking is a very fast back and forth of thoughts, verifications, and more.

Innovation is taking lateral thinking to perfection.

Attempts to make innovation, in particular ideation, a linear process is a perfect way to kill the outcome. The major episodes in the innovation process are linear and one builds on top of the other, but within the episodes, lateral thinking is the way to go. And one group of humans does it pretty well: startup-teams.
Creating a lateral thinking environment.

_________________________________
2) WHAT SHOULD WE INNOVATE?

Instead of watching competitors – a far more effective way to innovate is to watch customers. The first question an innovation team should have an answer for is where and for whom they innovate. We know that disrupters could come from anywhere and can change the way an industry segment does business in just a very short period of time. But there is absolutely no magic involved. They simply found out what the respective audience has trouble with – whether they can articulate it or not. So why not do the same for your business? Moreover, you sit right in this market. The best way to find out is to conduct very specific research in your market. No questionnaire and no interview with countless questions. Just a well guided casual conversation.
Creating leaders not followers

_________________________________
3) INNOVATION INSTEAD OF IMPROVEMENT

instead of settling with improvements – focus exclusively on disruptive innovation. In our research, we discovered that the only difference between searching for a disruptive innovation versus settling with an improvement is the time and the way we interact with our brain. So there is no reason to accept an improvement if you can get to disruptive innovation. The first step is to get rid of brainstorming. While brainstorming was a great first step in leveraging the brain in the ideation process, it produced only very obvious ideas. And instead of hoping for a great idea that may strike you like a lightning bolt – our brain is able to get to amazingly disruptive ideas over a sequence of sessions that stimulates new and different searches. The final composition with a highly diverse team can be reached in 4 to 8 weeks of very specific exploration tasks.
Getting truly creative literally and laterally ;) 

_________________________________
4) LEVERAGING THOUSANDS OF IDEAS

Instead of selecting one or only a few ideas from brainstorming – Neuro ideation produces thousands of ideas and idea pieces during a project. You will want to use them all – and you should. A complete disruptive innovation concept has never been just a single idea. Aggregating thousands of inputs including idea pieces, opinion, customer feedback, and research data can no longer be managed with colorful stickers and whiteboards.  You will need computer power to capture all the data, rate and rank them, sort and store them, and finally, analyze them. Looks like work but billion dollar businesses do not come for free.
Creating full concepts not only ideas

_________________________________
5) IN-MARKET IDEA VALIDATION

Instead of random experimentation in a lab – validate the “idea-success-fit” in your market. There is no better validation than exploration sessions with future clients. The added value of having your audience not only help validate the idea but also help shape it to the real-world application is priceless. To this point, there was not wasted a single penny in prototyping, experimentation, or testing. And pleeezzz do not fear that somebody can steal your idea. Only weak and obvious ideas can be stolen. Little improvements can easily be stolen, so keep them for yourself – but please do not call them innovation.
Not wasting time, nor money

_________________________________
6) INNOVATION COMES WITH TEAM DIVERSITY

Instead of working only with experts – assemble a highly diverse innovation dream team. Having more of the same experience is of no value in innovation. But having a greatly diverse team brings far better results than the best expert team in the world. Experience diversity is the new order in innovation. On top of all, involve your customers and business partners in the process.
Producing the best possible outcome

_________________________________
7) MARKET BORN PRODUCTS

Instead of building prototypes and testing them in labs, use a unique “market born” product design method.  A Minimum Viable Product (MVP) that shows only one feature is more important than a shiny but mediocre improvement. There is no lab that can compete with real user experiences. A lateral collaboration model with your customers and early adopters is bringing you more insights faster than any internal team ever can.
And still – no funding needed so far

_________________________________
8) INNOVATION FINANCING

Current estimates show that 90% of innovation projects won’t make it to get funding. And the more innovative and disruptive a concept is, the less likely the approval to go forward. This, theoretically insane behavior, stems from the way disruptive ideas get perceived. In particular, finance-people are conservative thinkers. Therefore, at last, one finance person should be part of the innovation team. Collaboration with the finance department on a bi-weekly cycle is highly suggested. Also here, neuroscience is an important guide on how to involve the executive bench in innovation projects to prime their thinking with what you are doing. Keep in mind that the next billion-dollar product line will need maybe a 100 million and more investment over time. To get such a financial commitment, the innovation management system must provide an extraordinary set of data to be able to defend an innovative concept. The fifty most innovative businesses from the past 20 years consumed more than $500 Million in funding before they became profitable. And investors worked with the management team on a weekly or monthly basis.
CFOs need relevant financial data – and learn to be an investor

_________________________________
9) INNOVATION TO MARKET

Instead of conventional market introduction, leverage neuroscience to select perfectly matching early adopters for creating a successful path into global markets. Innovative products will NEVER be purchased by 75% of your customer before the first 5% of early adopters got very excited. Most industry segments fail to innovate even with extraordinary solutions because they never had to do this in the past 20+ years. When IBM decided to go with an innovative computer into the market, they created a completely autonomous company: the “red IBM” but still did not manage to really scale it.
What every startup does due to the lack of a customer base

_________________________________
10) EXECUTIVE LEVEL REPORTING

Executives need to understand every process in an enterprise – no matter what. And the way this is done today is simply through data. The Deep Innovation Design process, when run with the corresponding software provides on average 25,000+ data points to analyze and feed an entire KPI framework. When moving from LINEAR to LATERAL thinking and corresponding methods, we gain an incomparable amount of data. The data ranges from real-time budget consumption along the way, various timelines such as Time-to-Innovate TTI, Time-to-Validation TTV, Time-to-Market TTM, and ROI data that may be even dynamic based on the progress. The data also deliver qualitative data such as Ideation-Network data measuring the degrees of ideation connections and ideation stacks as well as quantitative data like idea contribution volume, contributor network size, or idea validation levels and volume, and more.
Neuro innovation and lateral thinking are the two keys to profoundly different innovation data.

10 things that change with Neuro Innovation

All in all, some of the topics in Neuro Innovation have not even been part of the conventional innovation processes, so that means no change, only additional learning. In other words, we don’t touch existing neuro pathways but help build new ones. Summarizing the new ones: 1) What should we innovate?, Innovation Financing, Innovation-to-market.

Deep Innovation Design Training

All the above is part of a new, one-week training: Deep Innovation Design Champion starting Feb 22
See the full program here:
https://bluecallom.com/bcdc-training/

Innovation is no serendipity – Earth is no disk. :)

 

The name Deep Innovation Design Training indicates the difference: DEEP. Far deeper than any other innovation method so far. And instead of being more complicated, the Deep Innovation Design model makes innovation actually more easy and far better to manage, finance, and execute.

Uncovering why truly groundbreaking innovation was so hard and so rare:
1) Not really knowing how innovative ideas can be created.
2) Then, being forced to random experimentation, pivoting, and failing.
3) Not realizing that the relationship with users holds one of the most important keys to innovation.
4) Therefore, not really knowing what the ideal innovation team composition should look like.
5) Failing to create a robust, market-based concept validation.
6) Lacking the skills to present groundbreaking concepts for c-level approval.
7) The first 6 items makes it nearly impossible to create KPIs that allow creating a genuinely manageable process.
8) Mistakes are resulting in a large portion of projects being dismissed
9) And if not, disaster strikes when the go-to-market strategy started with the usual top customers due to lacking the understanding of early adopter dynamics.
10) As a result, corporations are failing to create disruptive innovation in 99% of the cases and settle with improvements or copying the new leaders.

Immense knowledge explosion in neuroscience has led to a new understanding of how ideas get created. This advancement resulted in innovation management processes, KPIs, and IMS systems. You can learn it all in the upcoming Deep Innovation Design Training.

Education leaders from the University for crafts and arts in Lucerne helped design the Deep Innovation Design Champion Training.

Here are the core elements of the one-week online training with live instructors.

1) Innovation Opportunity Discovery

Innovation Opportunity Discovery - BlueCallom Method Instead of random idea development, countless experimentations, and other activities, we developed a targeted innovation opportunity discovery method that involves customers and the market in general to the degree that has never been done except by highly innovative startups. It involves counterintuitive yet logical steps to observe the market and analyze the highest potentials and risks to get disrupted.

2) Innovation Strategy

Innovation Strategy - BlueCallom Method With the results of a targeted Innovation Opportunity Discovery, a team can craft an Innovation Strategy for the first time. You will describe the innovation strategy goal, who you will innovate for, budgets and resources, and the anticipated outcome.

3) Innovation Dream Team Assembly

Innovation Dream Team Assembly - BlueCallom Method Once a direction for the innovation is discovered, and a strategy is created, we can assemble an innovation dream team that looks different than 99% of all corporate innovation labs, centers, and teams.

4) Needs and Dreams Analysis

Needs and Dreams Analysis - BlueCallom Method The first step of such a team is to identify the needs and, most importantly, the DREAMS of their customers’ users. Getting to the customers’ dreams is not exactly an intuitive process, but Neuroscience is also here was extremely helpful.

5) Neuro Ideation

Neuro Ideation - BlueCallom Method Conventional brainstorming, stickers, and whiteboards have been the most sophisticated tools we had to let our brain spit out ideas. After understanding how ideas get processed, it was a shocking realization that those ideas were always exciting but never even nearly innovative – rarely if a major improvement. The human mind is the most complex object in the known universe but also the most effective. Knowing how ideas get composed from past experiences, how they get started, and composing new ideas changed everything. No drugs, no special training. It’s all about experiences, the right team, the right inputs, and the right details. Neuro ideation leads to a super logical process that we never need to understand in all details but in its behavior.

6) Disruptive Business Model Development

Disruptive Business Model Development - BlueCallom Method Disruptive technology, products, devices are the classics and rather fast to emulate. Disruptive Business Models a difficult to copy and, in connection with disruptive technologies and experiences, almost impossible to catch up. See Amazon, Apple, Google, IKEA, Microsoft (never invented anything), Tesla, and others. It’s clearly part of the innovation development process.

7) Market-Based Idea Validation

Market-Based Idea Validation - BlueCallom Method Instead of testing the product and showing it to a small group of insiders, fearing the competition could copy it before it is out, make massive in-market validation. Never use an agency for that. The innovation team needs to get out and ask roughly 20 – 30 clients in a personal interview. A team of ten can easily get feedback from 250 people. Part of the trick is the selection of the interviewee. Ask highly visual and vocal people, who you find on the web, in your support department’s records, and so forth. A methodical process and carefully crafted the questions – no more will do the magic.

8) Staged Innovation Financing

Staged Innovation Financing - BlueCallom Method Probably one of the most strategic acts of the entire innovation process. While startups may sack in a hundred million or more, how will you get the funding from your CFO? How can you convince an executive who perfected cash management, profitability, capital expenditures, and market cap – to make substantial investments into a future they cannot see. The “Staged Innovation Financing” model helps far beyond the monetary aspects but took a deep dive lesson from neuroscience. It explains why somebody not actively involved in a genuine innovation process will under no circumstances approve a substantial investment in groundbreaking innovation unless you use a methodical path, making them part of the process despite their busy days. An estimated 95% of corporate innovation projects fail because of that.

9) Prototyping Market Born Products

BlueCallom Prototyping Market Born ProductsDue to brain wiring as experts and their training, top of the line engineers cannot release premature products. This is an extremely costly problem that needs to be solved. Most successful products are born and improved in the market and completed during approximately six months of market testing. Market side advocates can provide priceless support and invaluable insights.

10) Innovation-To-Market

Innovation-To-Market - BlueCallom Method Usually are new product generations, or even new products are presented to the biggest customers first. The more disruptive a product is, the harder it is to get large businesses to accept those innovations. Is it an indication that the innovation is not good? Wrong. The audience is not good for groundbreaking innovation. Any groundbreaking innovation ever brought to market took at least 3 years to gain adoption and 5 to 10 years to become mainstream.

11) Global Scaling

Innovation Scaling Globally - BlueCallom Deep Innovation Design TrainingAfter the first two or so years in the go-to-market process need to scale. Audience expansion, geographic expansion, production scaling, sales and marketing scaling and diversifying to different audiences, financial scaling, growth financing, and so forth. THIS 11th EPISODE determines if INNOVATION is happening. It is the ultimate milestone of the innovation dream team, most likely in its 5th year of the project.

12) Innovation Continuum

Innovation Continuum - BlueCallom Deep Innovation Design TrainingEven the most innovative companies fail to continue their innovation journey. Cisco is still making most of their money with communication devices, Intel with their silicon-based chips, Mercedes with their combustion engine based automobiles, Google with search, Facebook with their social network, Uber with taxi service operation fees, and so forth. There is no “we wait until we get there” innovation culture, operational guidance, financial structure, team spirit, take years to enter into an “Innovation Continuum

.”


Innovation KPIs and goals - BlueCallom Deep Innovation Design Training

Management, KPIs, and Goals

With a detailed and methodical process, innovation turns from random experimentation to a measurable and manageable process. A strategic effort calls for a goal and milestones. All that is now possible, and you can experience it in the Deep Innovation Design Training.

1) Goals: 

Most likely, one objective is a competitive advantage. But the hard goal needs to be the return on investment and profit contribution. Obviously, there may be a whole series of other strategic goals and objectives.

2) Key Performance Indicators include:

Time Management:

Obviously, trying to manage anything the factor time is one of the most critical factors. Time to complete certain project episodes, execution time compared with others and so forth. The factor time is part of a series of KPIs.

Time to innovate:

The Time To Innovate TTI is one of the strategic KPIs. It’s important to know how fast can a team get to innovation. The start and the endpoint are critical to be defined so we can measure that time span. We calculate the TTI in days from the initial “Needs & Dreams Analysis” to the market-based “Idea Validation”. It’s also important to define innovation as a disruptive or groundbreaking innovation. Everything else would be an improvement.
Benchmark for a good TTI: 6 weeks

Time To Market:

The Time To Market is the time between “Idea Validation” and first revenue during the “Innovation-to-Market” episode.
Benchmark for a good TTM: 6 months

Budget Management:

The way a given budget is used over time between Innovation Opportunity Discovery and first revenue in the market. Then from first revenue to scaling, being in at least 20 countries and 5 continents.

Financing stages:

Staged Innovation Financing is a process that manages financing from Innovation Episode to Episode until the team presents to the CFO. In the meantime, the team will present each stage in a 3-minute online meeting.
Benchmark for a good initial budget is $50,000  plus the salary for a team of 8 to 12

Innovation contribution:

Measuring the number if innovation relevant ideas, research facts, and work inputs
Benchmark for a good TIC value: 1,200 (contributions)

Degree of innovation confluence:

Measuring idea composition based on team inspiration from other members. They share who inspired them. Data show the Idea Confluence Factor ICF learning how well a team builds on each other or works in isolation. The Individual Ingenuity Driver IID shows the key driver and possible dominance.

Innovation Progress States:

Measuring the progress from episode to episode as an IPS (Innovation Positioning System) over the typical 12 episodes. Average Mean Time Between Episodes MTBE
Benchmark for a good MTBE: 2 weeks

Innovation process data consolidation:

Average corporations run between 50 to 2,000 innovation projects, distributed across the world. It’s important to consolidate and compare all the data to help teams improve and share their experiences to advance their innovation processes.
Consolidation is important to see the overall effort, overall budgets, overall cost, overall team sizes, overall ROI. For comparison purposes KPIs including TTI, TTM, Budgets, TIC, ICF, IID, and MTBE.

With a Deep Innovation Design Training,
Innovation is no longer serendipity
but a highly strategic and intelligent process!

You may want to explore the BlueCallom Innovation Management Academy.

 

The end of brainstorming – it never led to groundbreaking innovation.

This post was inspired by a direct question for me on Quora. Over a year ago, I was asked a similar question.

Question: “How do successful companies manage the influx of ideas and choose top-notch ideas for inventing new products?

The answer “forced” us to build the first Neuro Innovation Management Software, BlueCallom! We realized it will be the end of brainstorming.

The end of brainstorming - opening up to an all new perspective

Hubble-Telescope Credit: Nasa

A loaded question. Almost like “how do we deal with the size of the universe and select where we want to do research?” We had amazing telescopes – but thinking outside the planet earth and building Hubble was a major breakthrough in many ways.

Answer: The influx of ideas and its selection.

Who says we have to make a selection? Think Hubble – look from the outside. We have to realize that all disruptive businesses we come across were built from pieces of ideas. If we select only a few – it will probably never survive just because we limit ourselves. More detailed questions needed to be answered:

Do we really know how to create a disruptive idea?

Once I realized that I couldn’t answer the following question: “How do you determine if there is an innovation at the end of the process?” we ended up building a Hubble for Innovation. We needed to leave the comfortable sessions, talking about thinking outside the box, thinking big, bold, open blah blah blah… and find our Hubble – Neuroscience.

The pictures we saw were more than spectacular!

We took the ideation process even further and deeper and stimulated an avalanche of idea pieces. In one project, we worked with 25 executives of a large airline, producing 25 x 30+ idea pieces = 750 idea pieces in one process (2 weeks of Neuro Ideation). Since we wanted to assess all ideas and use as many as we could, we ended up needing the computer and a few algorithms to help sort and rank it. Another project consisted of 600 managers from a large pharmaceutical company. We estimated that we aggregated roughly 18,000 idea pieces, of which we also want to take as many as we could. We had to admit, neither our idea collection mechanism nor our algorithm would be good enough for that task; so we decided to build a “machine” (software) to run the show.

Building “OUR” Innovation Hubble

There is no way I can describe all our insights from Neuroscience. However, our core discovery was: “Every idea ever created by a human being, was composed of past experiences.” Meaning we can’t “create any genuinely new idea.” In other words, hoping for ideas to compete in the innovation race is like dancing around a fireplace and hoping for rain. But that is what innovation labs do today.
The day we began to question all that, was the day we realized that innovation could be a logical, manageable and highly success-oriented process.

We’re almost there – currently beta testing. First, “self experiences” almost killed us, putting our own long-term vision on its head. It was even beyond our own expectations.

Neuro Innovation Management and the end of Brainstorming

1) No more limitations – The end of Brainstorming

Don’t limit your golden nuggets (ideas) because we all have been conditioned to a process called “Brainstorming.” While brainstorming was a great start, it never created groundbreaking innovation, and today we know why. Get your team from Brainstorming, yellow Post-Its, and whiteboards to a deep dive into Neuro Ideation. The depth of your ideas will be as different as the depth of the view from Hubble. Instead of ending a brainstorming session with a few “best ideas” leverage them all. Instead of making brainstorming the core of your ideation process, give your brain time to take a deep dive into past experiences, and come up with far more relevant concepts. Neuro Ideation is a two to three-week process and requires a needs and dreams analysis with your market to be prepared. The results will be stunning no matter how creative you may think you are.

2) Tools for things we can’t handle

Remember that we all built tools to overcome our physical limitations. So we need to build amazing tools to extend the limits of our idea process. It brings a truckload of valuable idea pieces. And when we think in that direction, it opens up a whole universe of innovation relevant aspects. We call it Deep Innovation Design.

3) Never forget the innovation purpose

You need to ask yourself some of the old questions: “What problem do you want to solve? Who do you want to innovate for? What value will you provide? 100% of the answers to those questions come from our customers. With Neuro Innovation Management, we can stimulate groundbreaking Innovation on Demand. Our “Innovation Hubble” already showed us pictures that we couldn’t imagine seeing before. We eventually realized that we have to start every innovation project with an “Innovation Opportunity Discovery” project.

P.S.
We feel like Pythagoras when he explained that earth is no disk – when we say “Innovation management is no serendipity,” declaring the end of brainstorming and the beginning of a logical, manageable innovation process.

I hope it gives you some inspiration.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BlueCallom to change innovation landscape with AI, Genetic Computing, and Neuroscience

NOVEMBER 25, 2020 (Lucerne, CH) BlueCallom ™ today announces its official launch as a Neuro Innovation
Management software company. The organization’s vision is to provide groundbreaking change to innovation
effectiveness and innovation economics. According to a UNESCO report, the investment in R&D has grown to
$1.7 Trillion, with further growth by 2030. BlueCallom pioneered a neuroscience-based solution, challenging
conventional ways of innovation, including brainstorming, working with paper stickers, random
experimentation, expert-dominated innovation, and R&D.

By applying knowledge from recent neuroscience discoveries, we transformed innovation into a highly
effective, far less costly, and manageable process,” said Axel Schultze, Founder, and CEO at BlueCallom. “A
new understanding of the neural process in our brain opened unexpected opportunities.” BlueCallom offers
software to help global innovation teams identify innovation opportunities, collaborate, ideate, validate
ideas, prepare for innovation financing, and bring their innovation into global markets. As a result, teams are
more efficient and able to generate a return-on-investment faster than previously capable.

The company aims to solve three major innovation problems: 1) lack of disruptive innovation, by providing a
Neuro Ideation method to achieve groundbreaking innovation within less than six weeks in 85% of all
attempts; 2) the struggle innovation teams face to launch innovations in global markets, by providing a
comprehensive innovation management solution with a unique innovation-to-market method; and 3) lack of
manageability, by providing executives with a dashboard to track innovation projects in real-time.

BlueCallom’s software is currently in beta-test with several early adopter firms, including a pharmaceutical
company, a technology company, and a university. The software is presently available for enterprises and
governments and the company expects it to be available for mid-market businesses in 2021.
For more information, please visit bluecallom.com and find the company on social media @BlueCallom.
—————————
About BlueCallom AG
BlueCallom’s vision is to leverage neuroscience for a groundbreaking enterprise-grade innovation experience.
The cloud-based Neuro Innovation Management software empowers innovation teams to create lasting
value through a new innovation life cycle, involving opportunity exploration, collaboration, ideation, idea
validation, financial reasoning, and global market entry. Executives get consolidated innovation progress data
in real-time. BlueCallom’s Deep Innovation Design model allows for collaboration with selected customers
and partners. Founded in 2020, the company is headquartered in Lucerne, Switzerland.
# # #
Media Contact:
Cleo Dan | cleo at  bluecallom com |

Innovation is an extremely counterintuitive business.

For most people outside the innovation space, Innovation means radically new or significantly improved products. Interestingly enough, product innovation is the least successful model. There are various ways to innovate. Highly successful and radically disruptive innovations today come from business model innovation. For instance, in my old company, Computer 2000, we changed the business model for tech distribution from the ground up. With our tiny startup in the 1980s, we took on competitors of multi-hundred million dollars in revenue. It looked like the chance to survive is exactly 0.00%. Today it is a $37 billion business leading the tech distribution in the world. And still, most competitors did not notice the difference and why we could become a global market leader. It was a business model disruption that went unnoticed. Another example is Airbnb. The company caters to travelers’ needs to stay in a more individual apartment or house instead of a small room in a hotel. Hotels, however, perceive the competition as a price war since there are less expensive apartments too. The hotel industry managers, who never understood the competition, fought back with legal acts, and did not compete on the service. As a result, they never brought their services in alignment with customer needs. Zappos, an online shoe dealer, changed both. Their business model and committed to organizational innovation. Soon thereafter, they also started an experience innovation project and became a great example of multi-facet innovations.

Big Five Innovation Types

 

Obviously, the topic can split even further. Still, we realized that these five innovation types need different approaches, different methods, have different financial or operational impacts, and call for a different innovation team composition.

P a r t – 1

In this first of five posts, I will share experiences, concepts, and product innovation definitions.

Product Innovation

Focused on the product side. This is the classic way to innovate and the most obvious to be recognized by the market. However, it is also the easiest to copy and to outperform quickly. Product innovation offers room for different degrees of innovation like a profound improvement of a product that changes the way users work or introduces a radically different product that may change a whole industry segment. Competing with product innovation is oftentimes done by starting a price war, and very quickly, the innovator may be forced to reduce pricing, increase marketing effort, or take a much longer time to grow market share. Alternative products as such innovation can quickly substitute product innovation is the most obvious, the most visible, and the fastest to understand. In the past 20 years, business model innovation, experience innovation, or organizational innovation continuously won over product innovation. Probably one of the best examples is the automobile industry. Companies fight on the product level: electric motor or combustion engine. One company, Tesla, does not lead on the product level but uses one of the hardest nuts to crack, multi-facet innovation.  On the surface, it is, of course, the electric car. But when looking under the hood, not literally speaking, it is the business model innovation, the organizational innovation, and the experience innovation that makes the company the market leader despite having a much smaller production volume. While the global awareness for Tesla was achieved with its super fast and wide-ranging electric car plus its early engagement in autonomous driving, the whole wide-angle view of the Tesla management, including building the charging stations and the gigantic innovation on the battery side, came from an organizational innovation thinking, the way the cars can be configured and ordered and how easy it is to understand what a user gets is part of the experience innovation, the whole pricing pressure, initial losses and ways the cars get sold is part of the business model innovation. No other car manufacture in the world was so innovative on all fronts and took the automobile no longer as a single product – but a part of holistic user experience. Another example is Microsoft. It’s no news that Microsoft never invented a single product. The operating systems, DOS, and Windows have been acquired, and so were all the office products, the SQL server, and other tools acquired. So one could say Microsft is the least innovative tech company in the world. All they did is integrated all the products and sold them under their own brand. Many are still not fully integrated – 30 years later. Instead of putting all the resources, time, and money into building the solution, they needed to fulfill their vision they acquired them. Microsoft’s real innovation is to create a user experience through integration and seamless exchange of data that nobody else saw as important. Nobody else did as well as they did. The experience innovation did not need a product but an architecture. The other innovation was a business model innovation. From the very early days, they committed not to build their own computers but pushed computer manufacturers to use their software. The non compete commitment from Microsoft was compelling enough to get an exclusive commitment from the computer vendors. And knowing that all the office apps will need their operating system was good enough to give the OS away for peanuts. Business model innovation and experience innovation were strong. Understanding how the company operates and what they offer was so confusing for most competitors that nobody cracked their dominance – till today. As we will discuss other innovation types in the following posts, you will see the difference of those innovation types relative to the ‘good old’ product innovation. You will see that product innovation is not going away – it’s still an important part of an innovative business. Product innovation is becoming a commodity – but is no longer a differentiator.

#ProductInnovation

In the next parts, 2, 3, 4, and 5, we will go into the other innovation types’ details. Here just a quick snapshot to put the above in context.

Experience Innovation

The most effective way to innovate, only recognized by users, and communicated through advocacy. Experiences include general customer experience all the way to entire entertainment solutions such as theme parks or highly interactive restaurant types, and lately, space travel. Experience innovation is very hard to copy and very hard to compete with. Usually, it takes highly creative minds to piggyback on a concept and develop a different model that makes the experience unique.

#ExperienceInnovation


Business Model Innovation

The most successful way to innovate with a big impact on the industry. Typically, business model innovation goes hand in hand with experience innovation. It is the hardest innovation type for any competition to copy, even to compete with. Changing a business model is hard enough for a business to develop – it takes years for the competition to emulate and follow. Business model innovation has been the most successful type of innovation in the past 20 years. The biggest number of business model innovations emerged from the US.

#BusinessModelInnovation


Organizational Innovation

Innovation within the organization, mainly for process acceleration, customer experience, resulting in increased profitability. It is tough to copy (if not done by consultants), making it very hard to understand from the outside and even the inside. Organizational innovation often requires a deep injection of new processes, different employees, and often a different management team. In large organizations, hundreds or even thousands of people may be affected by organizational innovation when they cannot unlearn and learn new ways of conducting their work. One question quickly rises to the top: “Is innovation killing jobs or the wrong team killing innovation?”

#OrganizationalInnovation


Structure Innovation

Supra-Enterprises, companies bigger than 25,000 employees, seem to have the hardest time to create truly ground-breaking innovation. In particular, in the western world, Top Executives, Board, Investor representatives, Unions, Industry associations, local government representatives, and maybe more have to agree on creating a new leadership structure to bring innovation forward. Inventing disruptive solutions often require major changes in the current teams as skills and experiences may shift significantly. Disruption in the automotive, energy, food industry requires knowledge and deep experiences in those industries not only on the enterprise side but also in external structures. A startup as a small company can go under the radar – a public company cannot.

#StructureInnovation


 

A billion-dollar innovation
is not done with a few
brainstorming meetings.

We started with a big problem (see history below) and have the vision to develop technology for innovation teams to innovate like never before imaginable. Now we are ready to go.

Ready to Callomize

On Wed, Oct 15, we introduced our “Neuro Ideation” methodology. On Tue Nov 24, we will open up for Beta Teams to start beta testing the system and build groundbreaking innovations. The beginning of an amazing journey.

 

A billion-dollar innovation is not done with a few brainstorming meetings.

There is no free lunch. And reading 30 days to get rich isn’t helping you either. There is no known highly disruptive startup that got to their initial concept, product, and market validation in a heartbeat. And there has been no disruptive innovation from larger enterprises in the past 20 years.

Innovation Management Software

We changed how to interact with your computer by helping you move from linear thinking to lateral thinking. You may already know from design thinking that iteration is a big part of the process. On our multi-user digital canvas, you see the facts, research, market data, or other given or provided information on the left-hand side –  right across your logical brain hemisphere. You see your creative responses and constructs, answers, or activities to your right, across your creative brain hemisphere. And the middle field, i.e., Field-9, is the “negotiated summary” or initial outcome. Very much like the brain halves exchange and negotiate information via the Center Callom (Corpus Callosum). Going further down, you find the execution of relevant information. When you start, you will possibly find it odd that everything is so small and so much information. Over time, however, you will not want to go back to lists of data where you need to go back and forth in that linear order. It takes a bit of mind training to get familiar with it, but your thought process will not only become much faster but less distracted.

Innovation is a highly unique process.

Hundreds of thousands of innovative concepts get turned down every year by CFOs in corporations or venture investors by startups. My blog post, “The Initial Value of an Idea is Zero,” is one of my most read blog posts.  And that addresses one of the biggest counterintuitive aspects of innovation. Why spending so much time on ideation if the value is initially zero. And since many executives know that the value is created in the execution, the ideation process became a second class citizen. If we look at the full scope of the Innovation Life Cycle below, you will realize that many steps look like ordinary business activities like producing a prototype or go to market and scaling. But there is a reason we added them to the methodology toolbox of the “Deep Innovation Design” model.

Each of the steps that are supposed to make an innovation successful is profoundly different relative to bring an improved product to market. Market validation is not done when a prototype is created but before any penny is spent building one. Why? Because you can build a prototype of an existing but improved product, and it becomes quickly obvious if it will work or not. Not in the innovation space. With your next-generation product, you go obviously to your biggest customer s first to get this massive initial volume you need to support the massive production line you have. There is no way to do that successfully with groundbreaking innovation. To gain fast access to global markets, you will probably need very different and far more creative ways to enter the markets than the growth strategy from existing improved products. On the other hand, scaling seems to be not a big deal in your existing production environment. The scaling of groundbreaking innovation is fundamentally different because your initial customer base of early adopters is by order of magnitude smaller.

The Deep Innovation Design process superseded any current innovation processes by its width of the end to end innovation lifecycle and the depth of the neuro ideation method.

Innovation Financing

Yet another big challenge is to get funding for an innovative project. You may get paid to innovate, but the innovation will not materialize. Or, as a startup, you build an amazing opportunity, but investors turn you down. Why is that? There is a multitude of reasons, but most have to do with “communication.” It’s an interesting pattern that most highly innovative businesses did not get any funding when they started. Google was not given the tiniest chance, yet the became the global leader. Salesforce had to initially bootstrap for the longest time to get of the ground with funding. Two of my companies the same. The simple answer is:  any groundbreaking innovation is challenging to understand and hard to believe in becoming successful. Only now, when we understand how we compose ideas, going far deeper into our minds to answer, we know how difficult it was to cross the chasm of the obvious ideas and get to the impossible ideas and back to something we can start realizing. A CFO or investor needs to be taken to the very same journey to understand the concept AND its importance. Without a diverse innovation team, this is virtually impossible.

Ready to rock

We are exceptionally excited to open up the door for beta users to join us, help us shape the future of innovation, maybe even the future of learning, thinking, communicating, and a future of human collaboration. Please consider joining our Neuro Ideation intro on Wed, Oct 15, and if you like to beta test BlueCallum com to our beta test webinar on Tue Nov 24.  Or simply get in touch with us at any time. we would love to explore what YOUR ideal way to innovate would be.

P.S.   History

Interestingly, we are a groundbreaking innovation in itself. 2016 we began to help startups methodically create disruptive business models. In 2018 we went deeper into how groundbreaking innovative ideas were created with little to no findings. The entire Internet could not provide an answer – we hit the wall, BOOM. In 2019 we ran by accident into some eye-opening presentations and talks from neuroscientists about how our neural system processes experiences and associates those experiences with each other on the fly. That it helped them to solve all kinds of brain illnesses was less interesting for us. But we found a way to apply those discoveries in the research to find out how innovation is created. After our amazing discovery, how our minds compose and process ideas, we feverishly created methods to apply the newly gained knowledge to innovate like never before imaginable. During initial work with a few big clients, we hit the wall again – BOOM. The early experiments showed that the participants created so many valuable ideas that it was impossible to capture the time [when ideas had been composed], and date volume killed our canvas-based model. With 25 people, it was easy to create 250 valuable idea snippets. If we included customers, we would run into the thousands. The only option to solve the problem was to build a computer model that could capture any number of idea snippets entered at any given point in time, including outside any brainstorming meeting, and include selected customers from around the world to contribute. Mid-February, when the earth seemed to stand still because of covid-19, we started our software development project. The first lines of code were written end of February. The early Beta (more an Alpha Version) was ready 6 months later, and a month later, we had the first two pioneer customers on the system. We knew that, when dealing with the brain, we are opening a can of worms. Today we know it isn’t just a can; it’s a full-size metal oil barrel. We realize we are at the beginning of an all-new era of cognitive technology.

 

 

Remember our first webinars?

We talked about the concept of Deep Innovation Design in January this year. We made the analogy
to athletes and how they went through an amazing transformation. In just 50 years amazing super stars!
Stunning athlete on motor bike

Today we are ready to rock innovators, managing their mind, like others their body.


.Today we have a very exciting introduction

Our software team made huge leaps with our Innovation Design Software. It’s the very first
Neuro-Ideation based software helping innovation mangers to stimulate creativity like
never before imaginable. “BlueCallom” is our enterprise grade Innovation Management
System with a very advanced executive dashboard.


You will find more details on our website: https://bluecallum.com


BlueCallom EXPERIENCE 2020

Now EXPERIENCE yourself, together with innovation managers from around the world, what
Deep Innovation Design and Neuro Ideation can do for you, when used in a methodical
way and when supported by technology. A six week program, where you experience an
entire innovation process from “where to start” to ground breaking innovation.