RULE #3: FACILITATE INNOVATION FLOW
The objective of this rule is to generate a competitive advantage via providing ideal conditions for the start-up to move faster and more effectively than others. The key questions to be addressed at this stage by both the execution and innovation company are:
- How can innovation teams be supported most effectively to enable quick development and validation of their business models?
- How can mentoring be defined along all stages of the innovation process?
- What tracking mechanisms can be established for fast decision making, access to core business strengths, networks, and sales / delivery resources?
- How can time-to-market be reduced, and the competitiveness of innovation development be maximized?
Facilitation is needed on two levels
Effective facilitation of the innovation flow happens on two levels – macro-level (basic support) and micro-level (specific execution support). The macro-level is all about accelerating access to resources which the innovation company needs to be successful, such as access to materials, experts, technologies, customers and intellectual property, functional support such as HR, finance, legal support, free budget, and mentoring from senior players in the enterprise.
A pragmatic way to establish this is to assign individual people within the execution company’s HR, finance, legal departments to quickly support the new ventures. Based on this, a growing support system within the execution company will emerge, knowing and understanding the new venture activities of the innovation company and facilitating the innovation flow in an optimum way.
Support on the micro-level, in turn, focuses on an output-oriented process for developing individual innovations and business models. This is significantly different from existing product development processes within corporates and follows a few key paradigms.
- Fail fast, fail cheap
- Fake it before you make it
- Go for what’s good enough
- Two steps forward – one back
- Start qualitative, end quantitative
These paradigms are at first sight straightforward, but are actually hard to implement in a corporate setup.