Saturday, October 31, 2020

Innovation-Led Digital Transformation

The challenge of managing innovation is an overly conservative approach itself, focusing on individual line extension renovation rather than developing a broader portfolio.

Due to rapid change and continuous disruptions, companies have huge pressures to survive and thrive in today’s hyper competitive economic dynamic. To be a highly functional and adaptive organizational system, innovation is what leads to differentiation. There are many ways to differentiate and, therefore, there are many ways to pursue innovation. 

Fundamentally, innovation is all about figuring out the better way to solve problems and pursue truth. In the rapidly evolving business and economic systems, innovation management is very complex but critical for the firm’s survival and thriving. In fact, forward-thinking companies encourage “out-of-box” thinking and make innovation-led digital transformation proactively.

Intersectional innovation: Creativity often happens at the intersection of conscious and subconscious thinking; knowledge and imagination, and all sorts of interdisciplinary dots connected to generate novel ideas. Innovation is a process to transform those great ideas and achieve their commercial values. Innovation often happens at the intersections of business and IT, or people and technology. Intersection innovation happens when ideas result from the clash of consumers and producers are more likely to be out of the box and disruptive, to create and manage ideas in an interdisciplinary way.

Digital Information Technology is in the unique position to oversee the underlying functions and processes which underpin innovation capability. The intersection of IT and people is where innovation happens; companies need to invest in IT necessary to advance businesses through either incremental or radical innovation. To amplify innovation effect, some additional innovation variables that might merit consideration are the scope, scale, and impact of the changes. Information Technology catalyzes innovation and drives a seamless digital transformation.

Directional Innovation: Innovation is the means to end. It is important to think when talking about innovation, not purely about technological advancements or breakthrough innovations, but also about different propositions, approaches to solve a problem or achieve the well-set business vision. A significant change can be called as a directional innovation if taking an alternative approach to make an impact on the corporation’s long term perspective or lead to increased revenue generation, either from expanding existing markets or creating entirely new markets. The challenge for directional innovation management is to understand where and how you can improve to scale for getting the biggest effect on either improving business performance or unleashing its potential.

We live in the era of people centricity, focusing on customers' needs should be an easier path to drive directional innovation. Innovation can be achieved with empathy, looking beyond the direct customer problem, wish or request, taking the context of use into account and perhaps by using a wide network of experts to come up with new propositions. Customers cannot solve your problems, but they can provide insight into their goals, their problems, and their context is invaluable. Customers may not always know the "products or services” they want, but they clearly understand their needs and pains, so involve them as early as possible in the process of directional innovation.

Ecological innovation: The traditional hierarchical lines will phase out and a collective of business partners, customers will emerge working collaboratively to co-solve complex problems collectively and drive ecological innovation effortlessly. Some companies have created institutional platforms that focus on building longer-term relationships, and sustaining mass collaboration that allows participants to develop subject knowledge over time and focus more directly on business objectives and digitally enabled innovation and transformation. The ecosystems draw together mutually supportive companies from multiple industries that collectively seek to create differentiated value that could not create alone, spark innovation and lead to collective progress.

The unprecedented convenience brought by digital technologies makes the world smaller and flatter, and brings fierce competitions across the global scope. It's important for businesses to digitally connect key resources in their vicinity/context to the resource-rich innovation hubs across the business ecosystem. Ecological innovation happens in the space between people in relationships receptively and thoughtfully interacting with interest and caring for one another’s needs, orchestrating the total enterprise ecosystem to either generate wealth for shareholders or generate prosperity of constituencies, co-develop great ideas or co-solving tough problems. Many companies that get stuck at the lower level of organizational maturity have never been better positioned to break out of a static industry box and engage in mass collaborations to spark creativity and enforce innovation. When continuing innovation takes place for the community to thrive, the ecosystem is dynamic and healthy, keep a balanced cycle and reach the renewal stage.

The challenge of managing innovation is an overly conservative approach itself, focusing on individual line extension renovation rather than developing a broader portfolio. The business and economic environment play an important role in sparking creativity and catalyzing innovation. It’s important to gain an in-depth understanding of different flavors of innovation as the variety of ideas or innovation directly contributes to the business value in terms of engagement, productivity, and profitability. Innovation happens frictionlessly in an open environment, that in turn, should lead to “inspirations,” which will further fuel more inclusiveness and innovation and drive digital transformation continually.


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Hello PEARL ZHU,I found your digital transformation blog by chance and was pleasantly surprised.I am grateful for the article, it has opened my eyes to how technology should be a sustainable one.
Also Read my article on SD-WAN and How Banking & Financial sector uses SDWAN and Cyber Hygiene for Startups

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