Yesterday at the PDMA Conference on Social Product Development and Co-Creation, we heard from David Ritter, CEO of InnoCentive. David talked about using challenge-driven product development in a B2B environment to take advantage of resources working outside of the immediate sphere and accelerate innovation capacity.
David said something that really hit home. He advises companies that are thinking about or experimenting with open innovation to get busy. Leading and large enterprises are investing in it, and you’re now competing against new companies that are built on the co-creation concept with a strong social culture and completely different economic model.
It’s time to stop waiting for leading practices to emerge that you can follow. The use of social models to collaborate and innovate is moving too fast to hang out on the sidelines. There are no time-tested industry practices to follow and while there are some examples of success, waiting for these practices to emerge will put you well behind the curve.
Kalypso’s research on Social Media and Product Innovation showed that early adopters are leading the way with impressive operational and financial results. These companies have figured out that even though they may not have leading practices to follow, they succeed when they start by thinking about their innovation and product development processes already in place and enhancing those efforts with social product innovation.
Companies should start small - begin by piloting the use of social models and technologies in product innovation and product development on a small scale. Learn from these early experiences and develop corporate knowledge and expertise to expand the efforts in a way that amplifies value. But most importantly, get started in order to reap the benefits from early projects and prepare to further leverage these capabilities as your processes and strategies mature.