How is Your Organization Training Innovators?

Tim Michaelis, PhD Candidate, NC State, Research Associate, CIMS
Tim Michaelis, PhD Candidate, NC State, Research Associate, CIMS


By Tim Michaelis, PhD Candidate, NC State University, Research Associate, Center for Innovation Management Studies (

According to 1,500 global innovation executives, interviewed by the Boston Consulting Group in 2014, innovation is considered a top 3 priority.(1) However, 70% of these executives rated their company’s innovation capabilities as only average. With such data in mind, data that indicates a significant gap between topic importance and the skills needed to address it, I decided to find out what the biggest companies are doing to train their innovators. Here’s what I’ve learned:

Innovation training simply does not happen.

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The Challenges of Intellectual Property

By RTM guest editors Irene J. Petrick, Thierry Rayna, and Ludmila Striukova

The pursuit of intellectual property (IP) that can be protected through patents, copyrights, and trademarks has traditionally formed the cornerstone of many companies’ strategies. The general rule of thumb is that IP, when it is well managed, yields sustainable competitive advantage. Recently, however, patent trolls—companies or individuals that buy up patents in bulk—have used as a weapon the very IP that was supposed to protect companies’ core inventions and provide competitive advantage. Wielding their IP ownership, these trolls have blocked its application in new innovations.

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Final #innovate2038 game roundup

By Jason Tester, IFTF, Innovate2038 Game-Master

Amazing #Innovate2038 community:

Three words: youallrock! The game ended at 9pm PT / midnight ET last night, with a final tally of 9,958 ideas from 543 players representing 53 countries. And this wasn’t just about quantity—we’re totally floored by the quality of the ideas and innovations, discussions and collaborations that you co-created over the past 36 hours to make the future.

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Sustainability: Leverage or Burden?

By Ed Bernstein, IRI President, and Greg Holden, Business Writer

How one frames a question matters. Media pundits of all stripes can attest to this simple fact; the choice of words when framing your topic matters to how your message is received. Take, for example, the question of whether or not to pursue the implementation of sustainability best practices at your organization. How your organization’s leadership requests such an implementation matters to how it is received by those performing it.

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The way social media strengthen innovation

By Ed Bernstein, IRI President, and Greg Holden, IRI Business Writer

Social media increase our access to information, they generate and advertise new trends, and they help us keep in touch with people we know only from that association meeting three years ago. Organizations, though, are attempting to discover how social media might enhance their success by reconnecting with and utilizing “dormant” or “lapsed” connections. So far, research on this topic remains unclear. What value can old networks bring to the organization? Social media provides us with a wide spectrum of new ideas and a way to stay in touch, but is there also a point where our number of contacts grows so large that staying connected over a long period of time becomes a challenge?

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