Thursday, May 26, 2016

Strategy is Leadership! Strategy is Innovation! The advice of 10 experts on innovation


By: Victor Assad

In a world of constant change, technology breakthroughs, and globalization, company strategies need constant redefinition. This is the advice of Vijay Govindarajan, known as “VG” and the author of The Three Box Solution, speaking to the audience of the Front End of Innovation Conference last week in Boston. VG said executives need to avoid the addiction of past successes and, instead, practice non-linear thinking. Companies can be continually innovative and sustain ongoing competitive advantage, if their executives become observant of the “lead signals” of non-linear changes. 

Executives must put into place the new business models and strategies necessary to compete in the future. Moreover, companies need to learn the distinctive skills required for future markets, technologies, clients, demographics, regulations, and competitors.

Too many companies, VG observed, have strategic planning systems that focus only on linear extensions of their current business models, products, and services. Their strategic planning processes are often short range. Instead, their strategic planning systems should focus on the business world of 2025. 
In this environment, VG declared “Strategy is leadership! Strategy is innovation!”

InnovationOne sponsored the “Leadership, Culture and Team” Track at the FEI Conference.

VG’s keynote speaker remarks were a perfect opening for the Leadership, Culture and Team Track at the FEI Conference, sponsored by InnovationOne.  Here are highlights from 9 other innovation experts.

Innovation can be inspired, measured, benchmarked and managed even in a world of constant change.

After 15 years of quantitative research by InnovationOne founder Brooke Dobni, PhD, we can unequivocally say that innovation can be inspired, measured, benchmarked and managed. When executives enthusiastically embrace innovation, provide a strategic intent for innovation, invest in it, develop the ecosystem and measures to support cultures of open innovation, and align the organization to commercialize their new innovation, they ignite the innovation of their employees, customers, and external partners. Says Brooke, “They create a sustainable competitive advantage in their domains and improved financial performance.” Organizations can achieve this even in a world of constant change and redefinition.

Monsanto’s Non-Linear Transition

Stephen Padgette, VP of R&D Investment Strategy at Monsanto, described how the executive leadership of this 100+ year-old, chemical company listened to non-linear signals outside of its industry and plotted a strategy to become a seed producer for the world, as well as a biotech company. This required a change in culture and a penchant for “making big bets.” Monsanto learned to build relationships with new technology companies and has made significant technology acquisitions along its journey. Monsanto’s current emphasis is on customer focus, learning customer expectations, getting outside-of-the-company’s boundaries, and learning to trust the “law of big data.” It is on the verge of marrying agriculture with the world of big data technology.

The Culture Wars

During the panel discussion on “The Culture Wars: How Can Leaders Create an Environment to Make a Difference” panel members provided interesting insights on the need of frequent, fast failure for innovation:

·         Scott Steinberg, author of Make Change Work for You, said “The willingness to embrace change is the single-most important factor in whether or not an organization will have innovative success. I’m now going to bring up some F-Bombs, failure and fear. There are big mistakes and little mistakes. How do we treat and encourage learning from little mistakes?”

·         Lin Sun of Proctor and Gamble said, “Culture change doesn’t happen overnight, it requires leadership behaviors to demonstrate values and culture.  Money isn’t the issue. Often the strategic intent doesn’t exist. If you have 1 minute in R & D to spend on a project, spend 59 seconds to define it, and 1 second on execution. Most of Gillette’s major innovations come from their skunkworks, passionate dedication, frequent and fast failure.”

Pfizer’s “Dare to Try”

John Klick described the methodology of Pfizer’s “Dare to Try” rapid ideation process and how it creates “passionistas.” The trick is to invite employees to be innovative with “out-of-the-box” thinking and then give them the tools, mentoring and recognition to be successful. 

Getting Unstuck

Mike Maddox, of Maddox Douglas, and co-author of the books Flirting with the Uninterested and Free the Idea Monkey, provided insights on the predictable patterns that stall innovation teams and the reliable ways to unstick teams and accelerate innovation.  According to Mike, many people and their organizations get so entrenched with their previous experience, that they totally fail to see the solution to a problem when it is in a different context. Mike described his concept of a “Pyramid of Innovation,” which is similar to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs pyramid model. Mike’s Innovation Model has “Potential” at the base, working up to “Permission,” then to “Pipeline to Portfolio,” and finally to “Profit.”  Mike suggested that organizations need to move from the traditional ROI model for evaluating and approving new innovation to a “Justification of Investment” (JOI) model. With JOI, the financial selection-criteria are less stringent, allowing more good ideas to go forward.

Listening to Mozart can teach us about innovation and team work!              
       
Three staff members from Ithaca College used music to demonstrate how teamwork impacts the important innovation competencies of creativity, risk taking, adaptability and teamwork. The quartet demonstrated with their music how role clarity, empathy, and trust within the quartet allows the musicians to adapt and improvise Mozart’s music.

Do you believe strategy is leadership? Strategy is innovation? What has worked for you? Join the discussion!


Victor Assad is a Managing Partner of InnovationOne and the CEO of Victor Assad, Strategic Human Resources Consulting. He consults on innovation, talent management, leadership development, accelerating change and other strategic initiatives. Learn more about the InnovationOne Health Index and our workshops at www.innovationone.com


Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Innovation Spotted 👀 at #FEI16

Innovation Spotted 👀 at #FEI16

Innovation is everywhere and invisible until you open your eyes to it. Similar to the light spectrum, some innovations are hard to see. Let’s use this metaphor while looking at a range of innovations from incremental to “new to the world.” Sometimes it’s hard to see an innovation made on the far incremental side of the spectrum, when someone makes a flavor change to food (Chocolate Cheerios) or an upgrade to a social platform (Facebook Live). Conversely, sometimes it is hard to see the new to the world innovations until they appear in your life and you say, “where was this all my life?”

Now you might have noticed we didn’t include any new to the world innovations. Our criteria for new to the world is rather challenging to achieve and here’s where it starts. Incremental innovations are “like this, but this” and often have easy comparisons. So, the iPhone is like a blackberry but it has a glass screen, simple apps and Apple design; incremental innovation. New to the world is much more challenging to achieve, like social networks or laptop computers. But even those have comparison points and hence it is a spectrum.

Some use the boundaries of incremental to new to the world as a way to put an innovation on a spectrum. You might see the next flavor of Oreo cookies (chocolate banana) as incremental and SpaceX as new to the world. Though, we have already gone to space, a private sector backed space program is certainly new to this world. The best way we’ve been able to articulate new to the world innovation is it often doesn’t have comparison points.

Now, what would you consider a new to the world innovation using that strict criteria? Pure new to the world innovations are hard to come by and rarely accepted for a very long time. We use the phrase “new to the moment” which gets to the idea of context. Let’s start with the first innovation we were presented with when we entered the conference, the Alike.io product using light and proximity sensors to see if we’re a match of similar interests with fellow attendees. New to the world, not really, but certainly a new to the moment innovation.



Sometimes it isn’t what the innovation was designed for but rather what you do with the innovation, like our friend Jeremy Gutsche and his crew. And make sure to check out our write-up Morning Innovation Shot in the Asterisk that includes his keynote.



The mobile 3D Modeling studio, Brado Innovation Lab, comes to your office and fast-tracks innovation ideas and then prototypes them with a team. It would certainly fit on the incremental innovation side of the spectrum, but the ideas they help you discover could be new to the moment.


If you took the time to explore the neighborhood like we did, you may have wandered into District Hall, a dedicated gathering space for the innovation community and self-proclaimed ‘home for innovation’ for Boston. This incremental innovation combined a coworking space with amazing food and cocktails (Gather), and coffee and sandwiches (Brew). We back any incremental innovation that includes connecting food and drink with people making an impact.


Augmented reality business cards by McLaren automotive was a surprise, though still an incremental innovation, it certainly caught our attention. Download an app, pull it up and point it at the McLaren business card and you got a full demo of the McLaren 570s. While one of us had reviewed this technology for packaging design, this was certainly a new to the moment innovation. Check out our recent share about McLaren.


If you’re looking to build upon the conference keynotes and sessions, you can get your innovation via the printed word on a page, as those things called books also made a healthy appearance. Our reading list, not in any order, is as follows. We will provide a review of each as we go.

The Capsule reading list:

If you’d like to learn more about the spectrum of innovation from incremental to new to the moment, please reach out. Or if you’d like to see more of what we gathered in Boston at the Front End of Innovation, please contact us here: info@capsule.us

In addition to the FEI blog, please continue to engage with us on Twitter and Instagram.

Managing Principal, Capsule

Director of Digital and Social, Capsule

Top 10 Trends Impacting the Future of Insights & Innovation

In the world of insights and innovation, trends are impacting the way we understand our customers, cultivate relationships with customers, improve products, create new products, and build business in a very big way.

This year at KNect365’s Insights, Marketing and Innovation Division, we have an amazing lineup of conferences that will help you inspire new thinking and drive your business forward.



Here are the key trends we think you need to stay on top of:

Leadership
Conscious Leadership
John Mackey, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Whole Foods Market, Best-Selling Author, Conscious Capitalism:
Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business
Find this session at TMRE October 18-20: http://bit.ly/25cgoRY

Storytelling
Directing the Story (with a Little Help from Aladdin, Fantasia, Pocahontas & Piglet)
Francis Glebas, Author: The Animators Eye and Directing the Story, Director, Storyboard and Visual Development Artist, Disney, Dreamworks Animation
Find this session at TMRE October 18-20: http://bit.ly/25cgoRY

Millennials
Deciphering Generations X, Y and V: How to Understand Next Generations and their Trends for guaranteed reach.
Jane Buckingham, Founder and CEO, Trendera, bestselling author
Find this session at Marketing Analytics & Data Science June 8-10: http://bit.ly/1ssK1gf

OmniChannel
Google's Evolving Toolset for Omnichannel Measurement
Matt Seitz, Google
Find this session at OmniShopper July 11-13: http://bit.ly/1Xmsdiu

Technology
Technologies to Watch Out for and Their Impact
Gary Shapiro, Consumer Technology Association
Find this session at Foresight & Trends September 27-29: http://bit.ly/1XmrMVw

Big Data
Big Data and Deep Analytics: The Industries of the Future
Alec Ross, New York Times Best-Selling Author, The Industries of the Future, Former Senior Advisor for Technology and Innovation at the State Department
Find this session at TMRE October 18-20: http://bit.ly/25cgoRY

Empathy
Evolving Celebrations – Getting to the Heart of the Consumer
Carol Miller and Andrea Navratil, America Greetings
Find this session at Marketing Analytics & Data Science June 8-10: http://bit.ly/1ssK1gf

Agile
How Logitech Gained Valuable Agile Shopper Insights
Betsy Aristud, Logitech
Find this session at OmniShopper July 11-13: http://bit.ly/1Xmsdiu

Culture
Conscious Leadership
John Mackey, Co-Founder and Co-CEO, Whole Foods Market, Best-Selling Author, Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business
Find this session at TMRE October 18-20: http://bit.ly/25cgoRY

Intrapreneurship
Entrepreneurship & the Future of Food
Manoj Fenelon, PepsiCo
Find this session at Foresight & Trends September 27-29: http://bit.ly/1XmrMVw

We hope you join us at one of our conferences so you can activate these trends and drive your business forward in the future!

Learn more about Marketing Analytics & Data Science: http://bit.ly/1ssK1gf Use code MADS16BL for $100 off the current rate.

Learn more about Foresight & Trends:
http://bit.ly/1XmrMVw Use code FT16BL for $100 off the current rate.

Learn more about OmniShopper: http://bit.ly/1Xmsdiu Use code OMNI16BL for $100 off the current rate.

Learn more about The Market Research Event (TMRE): http://bit.ly/25cgoRY Use code TMRE16BL for $100 off the current rate.

Cheers,


The Insights, Marketing, and Innovation Team at KNect365

Monday, May 23, 2016

Here’s How to Make Open Innovation Work!

By: Victor Assad, CEO of Victor Assad Strategic Human Resources Consulting and Managing Partner of InnovationOne

The term “open innovation” was coined by University of California, Berkeley, professor Henry Chesbrough when he authored a book with the same title.  According to Professor Chesbrough, “Open innovation is the use of purposive inflows and outflows of knowledge to accelerate internal innovation, and expand the markets for external use of innovation, respectfully. [It] assumes that firms can and should use external ideas as well as internal ideas, and internal and external paths to market, as they look to advance their technology”[i]



Open innovation is often a gradual transition

Through my work with Fortune 200 companies, I have observed transitions from closed, tops-down, controlled innovation to open innovation.  The transition is often gradual. They often followed the path of slowly building alliances with more relatively safe external partners, such as key academic researchers or small technology companies. The next step in the transition was usually technology acquisitions (most of which in my experience don’t meet their goals and failed--and also included the occasional sterling success), occasional projects with IDEO, and finally external crowdsourcing, as an attempt to solve a minor technological obstacle or learn more about customer preferences.

This transition often sends their law department’s intellectual property group into an apoplectic fit. I am sympathetic to their plight: “How can we protect the company’s IP when it is on the internet?”

At InnovationOne, we believe in open innovation.

Our research has shown that the most innovative companies create collaborative cultures and the ecosystems to support innovation. While we agree with Professor Chesbrough that companies need to look externally for inspiration, new ideas and solutions, we have found that a company’s own workforce can be a treasure trove of innovation. That is, if you point them in the right strategic direction, invest in their skills, give them challenges to overcome, and most importantly, give them explicit permission to ask questions, make suggestions and, well, be innovative!

Successful innovation, and most certainly open innovation, begins with executives. If executives don’t embrace innovation, talk about it endlessly with passion and enthusiasm, and invest in it, innovation won’t catch fire. 

Executives need to create an ecosystem in their companies that invites employees to generate ideas and build upon each other’s ideas. Reaching out to external experts, building alliances, and crowdsourcing are important, as long as innovators work within the limits of protecting their critical IP. Research on external crowdsourcing shows that it often fails, but it can be hugely successful when managed well within a collaborative community or as a contest.[ii]

Customer involvement is essential!

Many of our clients have found that when they listen to and empower their employees, especially the customer-facing ones, they learn to listen and build better relationships with their customers. While customers might not always know the next big innovation, having honest customer involvement accelerates innovation.

What else is needed for open innovation?

The organization’s ecosystem needs a reliable process with clear criteria and decision rights to decide which innovations to move forward. It also needs investment. Finally, the ecosystem must have the organizational alignment necessary to commercialize the innovation.

Organizational alignment can be one of the most difficult and heart breaking elements of innovation. Old habits die hard. It can be incredibly difficult to get the time and attention of departments that are lazar-focused on meeting the goals of current commercial operations. Alignment requires a strong executive champion, and a performance management and rewards system designed to support innovation.

What has been your experience with open innovation? Join the conversation!


Victor Assad is the CEO of Victor Assad Strategic Human Resources Consulting and is a Managing Partner of InnovationOne. He consults on talent management, leadership development and coaching, innovation, and other strategic initiatives. Please e-mail Victor at victorassad6@gmail.com or visitwww.victorhrconsultant.com. For innovation visit www.InnovationOne.US.




[i] Henry Chesbrough (2006), Open Innovation: Research a New Paradigm, Oxford University Press.
[ii] Kevin J. Boudreau and Karim R. Lakhani (April 2013) “Using the Crowd as an Innovative Partner, Harvard Business Review. Found at https://hbr.org/2013/04/using-the-crowd-as-an-innovation-partner/

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Pivoting is the new business innovation agility

By: Christina Gerakiteys

The possibilities opening up to businesses at this time of incredible change are exciting, though it will be challenging for some to release old beliefs. In order to see the possibilities and seize the opportunities, our eyes must be wide open.

A variety of terms have been used to describe innovation over the last few years. We have sustainable, incremental, disruptive and destructive innovation. One that was repeatedly used at last week’s Front End of Innovation Conference that resonates well was transformational. After all, isn’t that what innovation truly does? It transforms? 


We have entered a time period where the consumer is the boss. With a plethora of choices, why wouldn’t they be? And we know the importance of the Tribe (and our reliance on those who share similar thoughts and interests) is growing as is Conscience Purchasing (with more consumers considering the social and environmental implications) and Connectivity (and the growing importance and influence of our networks). So how do we take all of these elements and write them into a business plan? Well actually, we don’t.

There is a distinct movement away from writing the traditional sixty-page plan - the one you spend hours putting together with five and ten year projections, then slip into the bottom drawer until someone reminds you it’s time to look at it again.  What is preferred is a Business Model Canvas. The Business Model Canvas is a visual, agile and simple template that allows you to strategically develop your ideas/products/business.  And whether you’re planning incremental or transformational innovation will determine which Model Canvas you go with. In either case, it’s important that you’re prepared to pivot.

Strategy is definitely valuable but prototyping and testing your product, idea or service are worth more, and this is where pivoting comes in. Pivoting is the new business agility – when you need to, turn a little! Tried it and the client isn’t reacting? Pivot. Trialed it and the client has a problem with it? Pivot. Traditionally we measured our progress against our (dusty) business plan and if there was a misalignment, we felt the fault was ours. How could the plan, which was constructed on a number of sound assumptions, not be accurate? Change the plan. Pivot. Until you find the right match. Pivot. We talk about flexibility but we’re not really walking the talk.  And if you pivot to the point where you’re dizzy, go back to square one.

It’s tough to be in business. More than one business guru has told us that a business designed for success in the 20th Century is inevitably also designed for failure in the 21st Century. The Industrial Economy is over and we are heading into a Service Economy for a Connected Community, so much so that we are being offered a multitude of services for free. Google are currently trialing air balloons that allow free Internet access via satellite transmission. They are managing to keep them in the air for 200 days in spite of the nay sayers. The plan is to have enough of these in the air to provide worldwide, free Internet access. Imagine what that would mean for isolated communities, for medical practices, for education, for your Internet provider!

Networking is integral to the Connective Age. HR positions are set to be filled not by those with impressive University qualifications, but by those with impressive networks. Seth Godin is an advocate of ‘date your client’. As the lines between work life and social life continue to blur, we want to know whom we are doing business with. We want to connect.

Significant transformational innovations have a slow diffusion rate. In other words, it will be a while before you reap the benefits.  But if you go back and plot the growth of the last product or service you offered, you would find that from ideation to execution, it took a while to reap the benefits from that as well.  

Students at the Singularity University in California invest 80% of their time in looking towards the future, yet how many businesses spend even 20% of their time or resources doing this?

Here are some questions you can ask at your next board or team meeting or ask yourself, if you are a one-person operation, to test where you’re at:

·         How much time do you spend looking forward?
·         When was the last time you talked to and observed your clients? Out of the office? Really listened?
·         How do you improve your client’s experience of life? What value do you add?
·         Can you move/react quickly and effectively?
·         Does your “culture eat strategy for breakfast”? Do you have the kind of workplace people want to spend time at?
·         Are your meetings productive? Do people contribute or roll their eyes and watch the clock?
·         Have you got the right people on your team?
·         What is your core competency ability? What is your strength?
·         Are you authentic? Do you do what you say you will?
·         Are you giving it 100% or holding back? Why are you holding back?


The good news is you don’t have to make radical changes to your entire business. What you do need to do is give permission to take even a little of it to the edge.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Optimizing Financial Return on NPD Innovation

by: Don Creswell, SmartOrg Inc.

People + Process + Tools

Making choices among product candidates to develop and sell, markets to penetrate, technologies to pursue and other factors that have a bearing on success involves forecasting future revenues, cost and time where there is a dearth, even total absence, of data. The future is fuzzy and uncertainty is the norm.
Companies that design, develop and market products face this dilemma at one time or another. To deal with uncertainty and avoid taking risks that may jeopardize one’s career, many decision-makers choose a safe path based on conservative assumptions around such things as the addressable market, price, volume, margins and other factors. The result? Mediocre results at best.
A conservative, risk-adverse culture seriously reduces a company’s ability to excel at innovation, where uncertainty and attendant risks are to be expected and failure rates are high.
So what do you do? Don’t take risks and your innovation efforts fail to produce great products. Take risks, fail and take the consequences. As the ruler in the Broadway musical “The King and I” said, “Is a puzzlement.”

MAKING RISK AND UNCERTAINTY WORK FOR YOU

Many, if not most, companies address risk and uncertainty (if they do it at all) via check lists, scorecards, and other subjective methods, which while better than nothing, are quite inadequate to the task of supporting decisions that can affect investments of tens or hundreds of millions of dollars.
In their Best Practice Guidebook “Innovation Portfolio Management: Balancing Value and Risk,” authors SmartOrg and Frost & Sullivan describe how Beta Inc. (a pseudonym for a real company) deals head-on with the challenges surrounding new product development. The six-step process addresses individual project (product) evaluation as well as development and management of a portfolio that balances the risk and return from a mix of projects. The objective is to optimize the overall return on the investment in innovative new products, while making room for an acceptable amount of risk in the service of innovation.
Beta’s organization is typical of companies that have adopted the innovation portfolio process:

People

Process Owner: Beta’s four-tier portfolio team consists of a process owner who is responsible for facilitating and managing the portfolio process and system.
Executive Team: C-level and senior management in R&D, marketing, manufacturing and finance set the company’s innovation strategy and manage the innovation portfolio.
Project Teams: Representatives from R&D, product launch, marketing, sales and finance, whose leaders report directly to the executive team and who develop and track metrics in the portfolio management system.
Calibration Committee: Project leaders, technical, market or topical experts and the executive team conduct peer review of the projects in the system before portfolio prioritization and funding decisions are made.

Process

A six-step process guides Beta’s innovation portfolio decision making:
Screen Project: Screen new and ongoing projects for selection and entrance into the portfolio management system.
Evaluate Project: Model each project’s value via seven indicators and ranges of uncertainty.
Calibrate Information: Conduct a peer review of the project in the system to validate assumptions and refine projects.
Balance the Portfolio: Prioritize projects and balance the portfolio based on value, uncertainty and strategic goals.
Adjust the Portfolio Strategy: Manage resource constraints and modify the portfolio strategy.
Track Progress: Update information to review projects that are over- or under-performing.

Analytics and Tools

Software tools such as SmartOrg’s Portfolio Navigator® support decision, risk and economic analysis of each project and then assemble projects into a portfolio or multiple portfolios (business units, product categories, technologies, geography, etc.). A well-balanced portfolio significantly improves the odds of optimizing the financial value produced by your investment in innovative products.
Analytics are not ends in themselves, but serve as input to conversation and deliberation among decision makers and stakeholders who contribute their judgment, experience and wisdom to the decision-making process.

The complete process is described in the Frost & Sullivan Best Practice Guidebook “Innovation Portfolio Management: Balancing Value and Risk.”

Monday, May 16, 2016

🍻Innovation Brewed :: Samuel Adams Brewery Tour

🍻Innovation Brewed and the Samuel Adams Brewery Tour



Each year at FEI we get a few tours of local organizations and hear how they approach the Front End of Innovation. This year was the Samuel Adams Brewery and it may be hard for any future year to top this experience. Sad, but true.


It starts with a bus ride to the center of Boston beer neighborhood, also known as the Samuel Adams brewery. The entrance is unassuming and communal in style, then you enter the room where a waft of hops flows over you like passing by a lilac bush in bloom. It makes you wonder why no one has invented a spa / brewery concept yet? Seriously people, what have we been putting our minds to if we’ve missed the best idea of this century? Then, you come back to reality as the voice of our tour guide starts to talk fermentation.


Seeing inside the Boston Beer Company’s craft brewery that started a craft movement is a true privilege. Their process for innovation seems sinful. But, this is the culture of the craft beer industry, as we’ve seen it in the relationship between Surly and Summit here in Minneapolis and we’ve noticed it amongst many other craft breweries in the region. Our own client, and a brand in which we’ve taken an equity investment, Take16 has been welcomed into the brewing community. This community of craftsmanship is likely a shock to anyone coming out of a highly competitive industry. Once you’ve spent some time drinking the beer of collaboration, it is hard to go back to the old guard of industry titans.


Here are some of our innovation learnings you may be able to apply to your venture or team.


One: Creativity should be the most difficult thing you have to do, everyday. Eliminate distractions due to business, use process to build stability and allow chaos to fuel creativity. It is a daily workout for the brains of everyone on your team. Keeping your brains fit and capable is essential to a creative team developing creative new ideas.




Two: Set up individual roles to get them out of the way and keep yourself from getting stuck in process. Their roles included: Instigator for Change, Idea and Innovate, Process Police, Get it Done (workhorse) and The Glue (flexible and positive).


Three: Look for opportunities to do something different is an extreme challenge in the craft brewing industry. The industry of craft beer growth is almost beyond comprehension at 33% YOY distribution sales. This kind of growth means finding the white spaces is more challenging by the day.


Four: Experiment, keep experimenting and experiment some more until you take something to market, then do it again. With over 60 beers, the Samuel Adams team has certainly taken this approach with serious ferocity. The Boston Beer Company has increased from 3 brands to 8 over the last 5 years, as well as released over a hundred new products just last year, 2 new products each week.


Five: Define your question and what you need to answer the question. Make sure to do this before you experiment, so that your team is set up to win.


Those are a handful of learnings from inside the brewery, there were plenty of other insights for anyone curious about the beer innovation process involving mashing, kettle boil, fermentation, storage, and packaging (our favorite, of course). This post also related nicely to a recent bit of insight into how you’re burning innovation calories. If you’d like to learn more, please e-mail us and we’d be happy to provide additional insight.


Enjoy a pint outside in the sun as soon as humanly possible.🍻And, if you can, make it a Samuel Adams beer.


In addition to the FEI blog, please continue to engage with us on Twitter and Instagram.


Managing Principal, Capsule


Director of Digital and Social, Capsule

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