What Form of Organization to Really Innovate?
Are companies really capable of generating innovation? What could they change to make it so? Take a look at what they can do here.
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To generate innovation, traditional organizational methods are inadequate. The companies are organized in silos. Often the small political games of the organization slow down or extinguish any innovation. And as for the traditional organizational structures, they are ok to industrialize a product that will be renewed perhaps every seven years, but certainly not every month or every year.
It is, therefore, necessary to rethink the modes of organization, in order to no longer be on a slow industrialized mode, but on an open and fast mode.
We notice that innovative companies are very often companies that have emerged with a new innovative idea, and that have managed to create their market. We often see the situation with new companies, and research has been done showing that innovation could be modeled mathematically, with a very rapid ascending curve, then a continuous descent. You can see these curves on this video at 11:09. Are companies destined to be less and less innovative? What is certain is that to get out of this postulate, it is necessary to radically change the way companies work, and that even today the magic recipe does not yet exist, or else has not yet infused everywhere.
In this article, I propose three paths of exploration for self-innovative organizations.
This is something that is often heard, even if in my humble opinion it is never well applied or well motivated. Is it a bias to promote friends? To communicate? It is a path to be followed or even extended. What would be done would be to have an organization turned towards new value creations, with as a business project to "startup" with the youngest people, who will then take the upper hand on their perimeter, or accompany the youngest later. Why put the younger ones forward like that? Far from me to make a blissful promotion of youth (at my age I have to resolve myself to say that I am no longer part of it), but young people bring a new look, often very nuanced (sorry I have an aversion to the word "modern"), and often very close to the wishes of customers. They have not yet "molded" themselves into the corporate culture. They are therefore free of any bias, and represent in the company a more accurate and representative picture of society. Who better, then, to define a product? Roger who's retiring in a year, or Simon who has been thinking for three years about his wish to be promoted to "Super Manager"?
In terms of consequences, I see a very fine HR management will certainly promote the idea of leaving employees a certain freedom in their career development wishes, and at the same time hiring experienced people who will fill the gaps generated by this desire for freedom.
The idea here is to be inspired by nature. Indeed, nature shows us how to adapt and evolve in order to survive. It is then necessary to think the organization in an adaptive and evolutionary body, self-learning and autonomous, in order to be self-adaptive.
This requires multidisciplinary profiles, empowered and responsible, and finally self-learning. And certainly a very flat hierarchy. Do you have examples of managers in the wilderness? Leaders, yes, but no managers. And no other form of hierarchy except leaders, whose main role is to define a vision, share it, and make everyone pull in the same direction. Period.
You can find a good example of it could be on this BCG article.
Big Bang Organization
It is a question of starting from the postulate (perhaps pessimistic view) that organizations were born to die. It would be better to create another entity in parallel that we would let grow at the risk that it cannibalizes the parent company. The parent company would create a parallel company, in startup mode on an innovative idea, and thus make it grow. I see some people shouting that this is certainly not the most miraculous solution, not to mention the social impact of creating a cannibal enterprise. Nevertheless, creating a parallel structure can allow a rapid response to new competition that would be fierce.
As we can see, several new types of organization can be proposed. And what do you have in mind?
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