Thursday, February 25, 2010

Kathy Robison: 7 Keys to Innovation - European Style

Posted below is a wonderful piece by Kathy Robison that we'd like to share with you. Kathy discusses the recent conference, Front End of Innovation Europe 2010. To learn more about FEI 2010, please click here.


7 Keys to Innovation - European Style
by Kathy Robison

Two weeks ago, I attended the Front End Innovation Europe Conference (FEI Europe) held in Amsterdam. One of the highlights was seeing the car in the picture above in person. Yes, they drove it into a large conference room inside the Hilton Hotel. It is the 2010 BMW Vision EfficientDynamics Concept car, and it is even more cool in person than in the photo. It's BMW's answer to the green car revolution. Though perhaps a little late to the game, I suspect it will eventually prove to be a huge success as they continue to do engineering with more style than most other car makers. In addition to seeing the car, we got to hear directly from Adrian van Hooydonk, the Director of Design of BMW Group and mastermind behind the group that developed the car. They clearly rose to the challenge of eloquently working Future Sustainability into their brand of the Joy of Mobility in a record amount of time.

We also received a lesson from Josephine Green, a well-known leader in trends and strategy from Philips Design, on Engaging with the Future Differently. It was a real eye opener for many. We also heard fantastic examples of innovation in conjunction with universities from Sigvald Harryson with Copenhagen Business School that left us all realizing the vastness of the untapped resources lurking around our universities. The event concluded with a superb presentation from the World Business Council for Sustainable Development and an interactive session that literally no one wanted to leave. All in all... a huge success! If you missed FEI Europe, don't miss FEI USA 2010 in Boston this coming May (see editor's note for 20% off). I suspect it to be equally as tantalizing.

I've written previously about the Pitfalls of Innovation, and I still believe that far more talk about innovation occurs than actual innovation because true innovation comes from doing not talking. Just go to any third world country where people are forced to live with minimal resources and you will see what true innovation is all about. It comes more from unmet needs and a gap in resources than heavily padded budgets purposed toward the never-ending replacement of old gadgets with new gadgets. None-the-less, well done conferences such as FEI, are well worth it.

Below are the 7 Keys to an Innovative Business. Some are my standard favorites, and others I picked up at the FEI Europe Conference.

Click here to ready Kathy's 7 Keys to Innovation.

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