McKinsey’s Innovation Battle Test – Ignore Design: THE Game Changer
McKinsey, the bastion for strategy recently detailed how to “Battle Test Your Innovation Strategy“. What did it end up detailing? Nothing related to innovation at all. Would Alessi or Bodum be surprised by McKinsey’s mentality? No. Because innovation isn’t about “lead or leap” it is about (design) disruption and McKinsey misses the mark.
Reactive questions posed by McKinsey focus on: competitive landscapes, price points supply-side dynamics vs. customer demand, geographies or segments, segment overlap, going out of business in 1-3yrs, responses to attackers, next versions and extensions and how to start building now? Living in the present.
Only one 9 questions discussed address a Proactive, future oriented game changing mentality: How much of a lead or leap—technological or otherwise—must we make in the next generation of our product or service? and still only addressing the “next” iteration, not true “innovation” detailing how design, via physical products or virtual services will impact the direction of the firm. Does Bodun, Lacie, Alessi or any other design-centric firm ignore such factors? No. Ignoring the key factor of innovation: zigging when others zag, pushing when others are catching up and ignoring group think is what determines battle successful firms.
Has your firm embed these mentalities in its DNA? Is failure a mechanism for growth or a limiter of experimentation which ultimately drives trial and error – the battle scars of innovation because the rest, while absolutely necessarily is just good sense – strategic awareness not an embedded innovation mentality for battlefield success.