Corporate innovation programs are primarily measuring revenue to show success –but that’s a risk, it a small incubated program is being compared to the primary billion dollar business lines. ROI is a fallacy metric of corporate innovation. Basing program success on ROI too early, rather than dedicated innovation KPIs, will not yield an accurate representation of progress.
In our recent Crowd Companies research, “The Corporate Innovation Imperative” (available for download here), we found there is a startling chasm between what organizations are measuring around innovation and which KPIs truly indicate program success from infancy through maturity. Corporate innovators who implement realistic measurement plans that focus on innovation KPIs, not immediate ROI, find greater executive support and are given adequate time to deliver results.
In large companies, innovation is a willingness not to be understood for a long period of time
Corporate innovation leaders face many challenges when attempting to get innovation programs off the ground. Peter Schwarzenbauer, chairman of BMW (a Crowd Companies member), is quoted saying, “Innovation is a willingness not to be understood for a long period of time.”
Change agents are those whose radical, innovative ideas are not internally understood — and the culture of the company resists change that could conflict with existing business models. In our research, we tested to see if technology adoption, relationship with startups, or if understanding new trends would have been a primary cause of challenges — yet over and over, we heard that internal culture was the primary issue.
Our latest research report is now available, which was focused on how large companies are internally getting ready for the many waves of technology disruption that are here now, and coming. Companies need to be ready, with a dedicated innovation program –not just knee-jerk reacting to each new set of technologies that emerges. We asked a number of companies on how they defined innovation, and heard this common pattern:
“Corporate Innovation Defined: Doing something new that solves customers needs –even if it may be in conflict with your existing business”
We’ve made a high-level partial version available to the public on slideshare, but the full report is limited to our members at Crowd Companies. Over the coming months, we will publish other insights around corporate innovation.
Large, established companies are trying on various programs to foster new innovations in an attempt to find the best way to change course for their big ships.
These established companies are struggling to keep up with fast-paced, venture-backed startups that are changing customer expectations — and often causing business model disruption for traditional businesses. To combat this ever-growing threat, corporations are stepping up their investments in innovation, and deploying a variety of strategies, outlined below.