The highlight of my week was speaking at an industrial client’s internal “Growth & Innovation Forum” in Allentown, PA. The event gathered hundreds of innovation professionals from within the company to talk about the opportunity to drive growth from innovation. Dozens of other people from around the world participated via live video link even though in some places it was the middle of the night.
In addition to my talk on getting the innovation engine to fire on all cylinders, other speakers covered the specific challenges of innovating beyond the core, collaborating with customers, and the need for strategic alignment and accountability. The best presentations were given by the company’s customers who painted a clear, and not always flattering, picture of what it feels like to do business with them.
I was impressed by the very idea of the event and the level of dialog it initiated within the company. They are on a journey to transform their innovation capabilities and are making improvements in the multiple business disciplines required for success. The forum was a way to demonstrate commitment to the goal, communicate the strategic imperative, and build enthusiasm for change in an old business.
This is a practice worthy of emulation by anyone seeking to deliver growth from innovation.