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The Power of Empathy in Innovation

September 20, 2013 Innovation, Open Innovation 1 Comment
by Stefan Lindegaard

I believe that the innovation output would be much better if we really know and care about those we innovate with. How can we become better at this? Well, you can start by asking yourself questions like these:

Why am I working with this person? What are the real reasons for us to do something together? Most often, the reasons you come up with are all about yourself. This can still bring good benefits, but you win even more when you start seeing the full picture – and both sides – of the partnership.

What is this person really interested in? What actions make this person grow – or lose – respect for others? The best kind of innovation is created between people, not companies. …

Metrics and Open Innovation: What Should We Measure?

March 26, 2013 Open Innovation 3 Comments
by Stefan Lindegaard

This is a difficult topic. There is definitely some in the adage of “if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”. However, I have seen too many examples in which smart people get side-tracked on what really matters – the output – as they try to develop metrics in order to satisfy executives further up in the system.

The development of metrics for innovation in general has been a major topic for more than two decades. Yet there is no clear guidance on how companies should approach this in a way that makes it possible to measure internally let alone across competitors and/or different industries.

One reason is that larger companies have several business units with different kinds of products and services. Even with …

Passing the Mental Check on Innovation Challenges

October 29, 2012 Open Innovation 3 Comments
by Stefan Lindegaard

As I mentioned in this blog post, 5 Key Elements for Making Communities Work, I gave a talk at the HYPE Innovation User Forum last year.

At the forum, I met Colin Nelson from HYPE Innovation, who gave an interesting presentation in which he shared some good insights on how to make people participate in innovation challenges.

I especially paid attention to his comments that any individual that we invite to share ideas or expertise run through a series of mental checks before they spare their time. Colin states that these checks are carried out at lightening pace and often done subconsciously. However, if we understand what they are, the answers to such checks can be built into a communications plan.

Some examples are …

Why Open Innovation is Not for Small Companies

by Stefan Lindegaard

This blog post was first published more than two years ago. I decided to re-post it because the topic is still relevant and because of the value in the many great comments that my fairly provocative thoughts generated. If you want to read more about open innovation between big and small companies, you should take a look at my on book on this topic: Making Open Innovation Work. It is free of charge : – )

Back to the post…

It is difficult to find good cases on how smaller companies have engaged with open innovation. It is also difficult to give strong advice on how such companies should engage with open innovation.

I have reflected much on this and I am approaching a …

Is Corporate Venture Dead? Is Open Innovation the New Thing?

by Stefan Lindegaard

NOTE: I just had another great visit in Silicon Valley and one thing I picked up this time is the surge of corporate venture like initiatives in the area. I met with several such units and I was pleased to learn that they work on a combined platform of corporate venture and open innovation activities.

This was one of my conclusion when I first published this blog post almost two years ago and my visit in Silicon Valley is why I am re-posting it. Let me know what you think.


Once upon a time, we had many corporate venture units that invested in external projects as well as in internal projects from the corporate groups that they belonged to.

The number of units declined …

From Archer to Magnet: A Good Goal for Open Innovation

April 10, 2012 Open Innovation 1 Comment
by Stefan Lindegaard

A while back, I met with Jan Bosch, a former VP of Open Innovation at Intuit. As you might already know, I am a big fan of their work on Intuit Collaboratory and especially on how they combine virtual and real life activities.

During our talk, Jan and I discussed a situation that I have seen at several companies. The situation was about how a company goes from being an “archer” in which you aim and shoot for relevant contacts to being a “magnet” in which relevant contacts come to your company.

This is an important issue for companies that are ready to move to the next level of open innovation after having started and implemented a platform. At least, two things are important …

The Side Effects of Open Innovation

March 30, 2012 Open Innovation 7 Comments
by Stefan Lindegaard

Open innovation will not only lead to new ways of making innovation happen. Innovation leaders and their executives will also experience side effects. I think most of these effects will be positive, but some will be mixed or perhaps even negative.

As innovation leaders and their executives implement open innovation practices, they can just as well start figuring out how to deal with side effects of open innovation such as described below.

• Open innovation is very much about managing change. If a company can handle the change process related to implementing open innovation, then they have learned valuable lessons that can be used in change management situations. In the current and future business climate, I think everyone should appreciate working in an organization …

You Always Have to Sell Innovation!

by Stefan Lindegaard

As an innovation leader or intrapreneur, you always have something to sell. In the end it is a product or a service, but during the development of a revenue-generator, you have to sell a vision to internal and external stakeholders.

You communicate that vision by:
•   Developing a value proposition that can be adapted for various stakeholders, and then
•   Capturing the very essence of the value proposition in a short and brief elevator pitch that focuses on the recipients of the message.

In Geoffrey Moore’s classic book, Crossing the Chasm, he provides the term “value proposition” as a way to choose from among what is presented to us for consideration. Options include choosing nothing at all, if there are no choices that improve our …

7 Challenges for Corporate Innovation Units

October 31, 2011 Open Innovation 7 Comments
by Stefan Lindegaard

What are the key challenges for corporate innovation units? Let’s have a discussion on this. Below you get my starters. Your input is highly appreciated!

Hit the window! The window of opportunity gets smaller and smaller and the time to success decreases. In short, cash cows are a dying race. Corporate innovation units need to hit smaller windows more often in order to create strong return on investments.

Organize for fast pace, fast change! This builds further on the above. Things just happen faster today and you need to prepare and organize for this.

Crack the X! My TBX model is quite simple. Innovation requires strong buy-in from the top (T) and support from the bottom (B), but the real challenge comes from middle managers …

FREE BOOK: Making Open Innovation Work

October 28, 2011 15inno, Open Innovation 22 Comments
by Stefan Lindegaard

“Big and small companies—you need to open up!” This is the key message in my new book, Making Open Innovation Work, which is available on Amazon.com.

Yes, I might make a few bucks on the book if you buy it, but since the key reason for writing this book was to increase the awareness of open innovation, I will give it to you free of charge. I even encourage you to share the book with your network.


The full book: Making Open Innovation Work by Stefan Lindegaard
Text – if  you want to share it with others: About Making Open Innovation Work

SHARE IT WITH OTHERS! Why not give your network, readers or community a free book? You are welcome to …