Organizing for Innovation

To counteract new product failure, one needs to develop different and special organizational arrangements for innovation. There are six areas to focus on;

1. Vision and Objectives.Top management should provide a vision for innovation that is placed alongside the goals for the company. The vision should have top priority as any new product is the future growth for any company.The firm should compare its own innovation record to its competitors and other leading businesses and identify the obstacles to innovation. A course of action should be recommended with objectives set and quantified before pursuing a number of new product alternatives with urgency and vigor.

2. People SkillsInnovation is based on knowledge. Firms that stand out in their field are those that know;* more about their competitors* what their customers want* available technological solutions* making companies information easily available to all personnel* staff incentives to innovate

3. Customer Focus InnovationThe objective for any innovation is to delight the customer. Customer involvement and feedback should be top priority throughout the project. Often they create markets that did not exist previously.

4. Autonomous Teams, Parallel ProcessingInnovation should take place outside the firm. The objectives and tasks of the operation are very different from those of running the organization itself. Ongoing operations are simply too slow and unfocused.This occurs because the organization works in series and not in parallel. Traditionally, products start in R&D or marketing departments. They are eventually handed over to the engineering for design. Manufacturing takes over to make the product and finally to sales where its sold - by then it's too late because it offers no new benefits to the customer.A way to create innovation is to use a dedicated team to steer the project to completion. The team should consist of people in R&D, marketing, engineering, production and sales with each having the responsibility to the success of the project.

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