Research Insight: 12 ways to innovate

I’ve been reviewing the Research Insights in the book in order to identify those that will remain in the new edition, and which new ones might be added.  This article is one that might be included.  It identifies that innovation can be thought of as far more than just new product development.  It identifies 12 innovation areas and explains how different companies each have a specific profile across these twelve.  The areas are:

  1. Offerings – a firm’s products and services.
  2. Platform – “set of common components, assembly methods or technologies that serve as building blocks for a portfolio of products or services”.
  3. Solutions – “customised, integrated combination of products, services and information that solves customer problems”.
  4. Customers – individuals or organizations that use or consume a company’s offerings’.
  5. Customer experience – “everything a customer sees, hears, feels and otherwise experiences while interacting with a company”.
  6. Value capture – mechanisms, such as novel pricing systems or identifying untapped revenue streams, that more fully capture the value it creates.
  7. Processes – “configurations of business activities used to conduct internal operations”.
  8. Organisation – a company’s structure, partnerships and employee roles and responsibilities.
  9. Supply chain – sequence of business and information processes that link suppliers of products and services to operations.
  10. Presence – “the channels of distribution that a company employs to take offerings to market and the places where its offerings can be bought or used by customers”.
  11. Networking – communication channels with customers.
  12. Brands – “the symbols, words or marks through which a company communicates a promise to customers”.

Sawhney, M., Walcott, R.C., and Arroniz, I. (2006) The 12 Difference Ways for Companies to Innovate, MITSloan Management Review, Spring

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