I had an interesting session with a group of corporate innovators last week. The topic was open innovation and as we went through the key takeaways and reflections one of the participants stopped up and asked out loud:
“The internal issues are the most important. Just as they were two years ago. Not much has changed. Do we not have any progress on open innovation?”
There is of course lots of progress on open innovation as we now see more and more companies – and entire industries – embracing open innovation, but the question does raise a few interesting observations:
- The internal issues are really what matter the most and they just very difficult to deal with. Maybe we – as the open innovation community – need to pay even more attention to this.
- When you have been working with open innovation in a corporate role for many years, you might develop tunnel vision. Maybe you need to find a way to step back and see the big picture. The person asking the question actually recently did this as he moved from a more strategic role to one that is more operational with regards to their corporate open innovation efforts.
- Metrics are relevant in order to track progress; not just outcomes. Maybe a clear set of metrics could help get a better overview of whether open innovation efforts are moving in the right direction.
Just some observations.
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Stefan Lindegaard is an author, speaker and strategic advisor who focus on the topics of open innovation, social media and intrapreneurship.