By Jim Euchner, VP of Global Innovation, Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., RTM Editor-in-Chief
Where do you live? By this, I mean where do you spend your time?
I realized recently that many of the people who coexist with me in my physical world actually live in different places. I spend much of my workday in web conferences. Many teams in my organization communicate among themselves using WhatsApp—they live chunks of their work lives in WhatsApp. I connect with my wife face to face or by phone. One of my sons doesn’t answer his phone; he only texts. Another lives his social life within his multiplayer online video games; the game space is where he connects with friends to get together in physical space.
By Greg Holden, Business Writer & Social Media Manager, IRI
How do you spark creativity at work? This is a question as old as business itself and a topic of extensive research that has yet to be answered conclusively. What has been turned up through decades of study, however, is at least a cursory rebuttal of several big myths about how to encourage workers to be more creative. In a nutshell, creativity cannot be forced, only coaxed out of its hiding place with proper incentives.
By Jim Euchner, VP, Global Innovation, Goodyear, and RTM Editor-in-Chief
People will work long hours, climb over steep obstacles, and endure a lot of frustration to innovate if they believe they have a real chance to create something new. An organization can be said to have a culture of innovation when it supports those people and makes it possible for bold new things to happen with some regularity. Alas, in many organizations, it is almost impossible to be truly innovative. There are too many layers of organizational defense preventing it.
Creating true innovation—new types of products or services that can generate entirely new streams of revenue—is arguably the best way to transcend economic cycles and achieve sustainable growth. More and more, large corporations are turning to design firms to provide this fundamental innovation. These firms have a reputation for excelling in innovation both incremental (such as a new type of packaging design) and radical (such as a new business model that can disrupt an entire industry).
By Tim Michaelis, PhD Candidate, NC State University, Research Associate, Center for Innovation Management Studies (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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:
By Tamara Carleton, CEO and Founder, Innovation Leadership Board, LLC; William Cockayne, CEO and Founder, Lead|X; and, Yuriko Sawatani, Professor, Center for Leadership Strategy, Waseda University
Whether it’s open innovation, portfolio management, or customer-centered innovation, implementing any new innovation framework often means changing an organization’s culture. This special issue focuses on the underlying issues that frequently lead good initiatives to stumble: How do you change culture to support change?
By Jim Euchner, Editor-in-Chief, Research-Technology Management Journal
“The medium is the message.”
– Marshall McLuhan
Marshall McLuhan theorized that every new technology (or medium) carries with it an implicit meaning, a set of implications that go beyond its direct, utilitarian purpose. The meaning of the technology plays out over time and shifts the ways that we think about and interact with the world. Thus, technology not only fills needs in today’s world, but also sows the seeds of new needs and desires.
By Jim Euchner, VP of Global Innovation at Goodyear and Editor-in-Chief of Research-Technology Management (RTM)
Everyone files out of the meeting room. The senior R&D leadership team has just reviewed the plan for the coming year, the budget to support it, and the results of the employee engagement survey. A few questions, invariably respectful, follow the prepared presentations. As the staff leaves, there are scattered quiet discussions about the survey, which reinforced everyone’s sense that employees are strongly engaged with their work, but which also surfaced an inexplicable (to the leadership) lack of trust for the leaders.