Insert innovation: Strengthening the innovative capability of a large, mature firm
Large, mature firms that during many years have operated in stable and predictable business environments tend to have clear, predictable and linear product development processes with well-defined roles and responsibilities for everyone involved. The ways of working in such an organization are much different from how entrepreneurial start-up companies operates, with a lot less formalized system, more relying on transparency and dynamic collaboration – for their survival. When the business environment dramatically change for large, mature firms their formalized ways of working need to be complemented with dynamic and entrepreneurial mindset. Longevity for companies can be ensured through organizational ambidexterity; meaning to simultaneously exploit current technologies on current markets through incremental improvements and explore new technologies and future markets to ensure future competitiveness.
The purpose with this thesis is to build a deeper understanding of how exploration capabilities can be re-injected into a large, mature firm without disturbing the exploitation work, the fit-for-purpose daily business. This thesis summarizes the research performed by
the author, as industrial PhD student and responsible for the initiative to improve the company’s innovative capability. The work started in 2009 and includes several components, inserted into the company in a subtle way; the measuring innovation component was added in 2014 and provided data that made it possible to see the effects of the initiative.
Conclusions from this work is that the tested approach was demanding for the core team, improved the innovative capability of the company and led to awareness that organizational ambidexterity is necessary. The effectiveness of such an initiative would increase with earlier implementation of innovation measurement and more involvement, education and engagement of line managers.
engineering, ambidexterity, exploration.
Elfsberg, J., (2018). Insert innovation: Strengthening the innovative capability of a large, mature firm, Blekinge Institute of Technology Licentiate Dissertation Series, ISSN 1650-2140 ; 2