There are many definitions of innovation.
Fundamentally these are divided into two viz. treating it as a verb or a noun. The definitions that treat it as a verb, define it as a process and the ones treating it as a noun define an outcome.
Our founder, Shreyas Bakshi, prefers to not define it but understand the term which can then be aligned amongst all stakeholders in a way that is most appropriate to a particular context. His current understanding is as follows:
Innovation is a process of generating disproportionate value from solutions that are new to the context.
For further elaboration of each term in this statement, please do visit his blog or watch his video.
Innovation as a process is not like a Standard-Operating-Procedure (S-O-P) but more like a framework of guiding principles and stages which are non-linear. An innovation journey may have multiple tracks of work in multiple stages at the same time and may also have to go back a few stages often.
For more clarification on this topic, you may refer to a related chapter in the book, Dealing with the Mirage: Institutionalising Innovation, by our founder, Shreyas Bakshi. Other questions addressed in the same book are:
Design Thinking is one of the ways to innovate but not the only way. There are many more ways like Lateral Thinking™, Orbit-shift Thinking™, Systematic Inventive Thinking™, Systems Thinking etc. Each has its own strengths and limitations.
To know more about how different ways can be integrated to deliver a transformative impact on the outcomes, please refer to a paper, 'Breaking the Silos' of Innovation Methods by our Founder, Shreyas Bakshi, published in the International Journal of Systematic Innovation, Page 36, Volume 6, No. 2, September 2020.
In current times, Digital technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), Internet of Things (IoT) are important elements for achieving the innovation outcomes but not the only one. Technologies in many fields are transforming lives e.g. biology, material, food etc.
Innovation is fundamentally a natural thinking process which can be applied to all fields including all those mentioned earlier.
Creativity is about coming up with ideas for problem-solving in a way that is very different from most of the people. Innovation is about the entire gamut of things viz. identifying a problem, coming up with ideas to solve it and ensuring that it is deployed to generate higher value in the same context.
Hence, along with creativity and problem-solving, innovation also encompasses skills like problem-identification, solution-execution, people-engagement etc.
No. DWM finds that most innovation methods almost say the same thing in different ways while focusing on some unique aspect of innovation. Most of the providers of such methods also 'swear by' theirs and find it difficult to collaborate with others. This makes their approach very provider centric.
Hence, DWM's approach to innovation is not to add another method but to leverage the strengths of all available methods to deliver the outcome of a given stage of any innovation journey. This makes DWM's approach to be centred around the context and the people aiming to leverage it.
A journey of innovation is what a person or a set of people go through when they aspire to transform a context. To keep things simple, DWM divided an innovation journey into the following 4 stages or milestones:
The area where an innovative solution is required.
The outcome at this stage is a clear definition of the aspired outcome in a particular area and a few sub-journeys that would make it easier to manage
for discreet ideas to meet the identified need &/or solve the identified problem.
The outcome of this stage is a set of conceptually clear solutions based on the discreet ideas generated
to resolve the unknowns of any conceptual solution
The outcome of this stage is a working model of the chosen conceptual solution.
the working model of the solution
The outcome of this stage should ideally be the impact aspired at start and even beyond.
As stated earlier, these are non-linear and could have a lot of back-and-forth
The most widely understood area is to apply innovation to a business outcome. Innovation, as a fundamental thinking approach, can be applied to any area. We share below the categories and description of some of the areas. Please treat this list as indicative and feel free to apply innovation in any other area that you may find the need transformation.
To transform business outcomes of any kind e.g.
These businesses could be aiming for any type of impact e.g., commercial, social, ecological etc.
To transform capabilities of people for:
To transform the organisation by establishing processes, practices, platforms etc. such that it will accelerate the initiatives taken on by the current set of people and keep innovating even after it changes
To transform an industry or geographical region by engaging a wide range of people or businesses.
This is a classical dilemma that gets raised often. To resolve this, DWM believes in evolving a scale that calibrates different levels of innovations. DWM also observes that it often the level aspired at start and the end of the journey are very different and hence it has evolved two scales viz.
Complexity Levels (to be assessed at start of the journey)
|Complexity level||Know-how available||Partnerships required||Examples|
|CL1||Within the organisation||With other teams in the organisation||Cross-Functional, Cross-Business Teams etc.|
|CL2||Within existing value network||With entities in the existing value chain||Existing Suppliers, Distribution Channel Partners etc.|
|CL3||Within other known value networks||With new entities added in existing value chain||New type/categories of Suppliers, Distribution Channels Partners added|
|CL4||Beyond any known value networks||With new entities across domains/industries||Teams from multiple industries work together|
|CL5||Beyond the current 'body-of-knowledge'||With entities that have capabilities to do fundamental research and concept development||Single or Multiple organisation(s) working with Academia/ R&D Institutions|
Impact Levels (to be assessed at the end of a journey)
|Impact level||On Efficacies/Efficiencies*||On Offerings||Examples/ Description|
|IL1||Upto 50%||Improve the existing||Play-it-right
Never-before for an individual/team
|IL2||50% to 100%||New Features within same offerings||
Play-the-game-better. Become more efficient/profitable
Never-before within a function/ business unit
|IL3||100% to 300%||New Offerings within same category incl. ways of selling||
Play-in-some-unique-ways. Gain competitive advantage
Never-before within the organisation
|IL4||300% to 500%||New Category of Offerings within the same industry||Change-the-game in the industry
Transform the industry operates
Never-before in the industry
|IL5||More than 500%||New offerings across the industries||
Change-the-game across industries
Never-before across the industries
* Impact on Efficacies/Efficiencies are contextual e.g. If current losses are 10% then reducing it to 5% is 50% impact
There are many different roles that an individual can perform in any innovation journey. The following are some roles and their related core responsibilities. Either the roles and/or the responsibilities are not meant to be comprehensive but indicative. Each organisation or even each journey could customise/ contextualise these. An individual may also perform multiple roles in a particular journey or across multiple journeys.
The intent of classifying the roles is that each has its related competencies and skill requirements which are shared on the Certification Page.
|Champions||Generate innovative solutions
Support other team members for generating ideas
Pro-actively engage in the innovation journey
Take-on tasks relevant to own areas
|Leader||Lead the innovation team through the journey
Pre-empt and/or resolve any obstacles in accordance with the Charter
Engage pro-actively with all stakeholders of the journey
Inspire colleagues to take-on higher order innovation journeys
Provide enabling support throughout the journey
Align on the principles to allocate resources to the journey and provide these appropriate stages
Track various innovation journeys across the organisation
Collate the data without intruding on the respective journeys
Analyse the collated data and share the report with respective stakeholder
Support the stakeholders on taking decisions based on the synthesised reports
|Evangelist||Sets visionary goals that inspire people to take-on radical innovation journeys|
Help others apply the systematic approach of innovation to their journey
Enable others to imbibe the systematic approach of innovation
Work with various stakeholders to evolve a customised approach of innovation that will be relevant to them in their specific contexts
All sector or industries can leverage innovation. All it needs is the will of people to transform it.
No. Innovation, in general, and the systematic methods have been leveraged from kids to adults of all backgrounds and qualification levels. All that is required is the intent to transform and the will to ride through the uncertainties of the journey.
DWM Innovation is a platform where innovation experts provide innovation related services to people who need it.
The platform provides online tools to explore the possibilities, assess capabilities, set relevant growth aspirations, plan and track the journey towards it.
DWM is a platform that offers online tools for identifying, planning & tracking innovation based growth journeys as a product. Services related to making the journey happen are provided through a network of partner and associates.
There is no limit to the extent of growth that you can make. It depends a lot on your willingness to push yourself to think, act and communicate differently. Although, there are no guarantees, people who have leveraged such approaches appropriately have achieved at least 2x more impactful outcomes than through most other commonly known methods like brainstorming, KAIZEN, Six-Sigma, KANO, Consumer Insighting/ Research in conventional ways.
The context to identify opportunities
The number of solutions
The solutions to generate sustained value/impact.
Innovation is not just about ideation and execution, it is as much about identifying the ares to innovate. It is usually centred around uncovering an unmet/ latent need of the beneficiaries.
For journey for each role & level of competency and complexity, an Individual must understand the concepts by going through pre-recorded, engaging in live interactions at events/ guidance sessions as well as discussion forums. Apart from these, each one must apply the concepts on a variety of projects.
Create basic awareness amongst key stakeholder about the systematic ways to make disproportionate growth happen.
Build the belief amongst the stakeholders and a core team about the ways in which the systematic ways would work in their context.
The customised approach and a roadmap with the core team & key stakeholders.
The customised approach across the relevant sections of the organisation/ ecosystem as per the designed roadmap.
The core team and other interested members in the ecosystem to imbibe, apply and help others do so as well.
No. DWM Assessments do not give any absolute scores or scores that compare one against the other. These are designed for individuals and organisations to set and progress towards own aspirations. These assessments are intended to help individuals and organisations identify areas that they can leverage as well as those that they need to strengthen to make their journeys towards their aspired states.
Any disproportionate growth journey that is based on ways not known can be tracked using these tools. For typical growth journeys that are based on known ways of doing things, tools for project or strategy management would be more appropriate.
No. DWM’s certification programs are professional accomplishment programs. It is intended for those who wish to achieve radical goals and establish a track record of delivering these in real-world contexts.
Some methodology partners do have programs based on their specific methods accredited by some academic bodies. Please refer to their website for more information.
Individuals who can make transformative impact on the key deliverables of an organisation will be valued anywhere. Hence, the Individual Certification Programs are designed to make a person enhance their capabilities of dealing with a wide variety of challenges to deliver transformative impact.
Yes. These programs can be customised for specific needs of each organisation. In this case, the programs will be co-branded.
We believe that each Organisation’s context is different and needs a customised scale for measuring its potential and readiness for making disproportionate growth happen in its context. Hence, we evolve a customised scale that is apt for its context and guide the Organisation through its journey. Please CONTACT US for an EXPLORATORY CONVERSATION to plan the way forward.
No. DWM innovation’s offerings are suggestive and advisory in nature.
However, there is enough evidence of the approach having delivered much higher impact as compared to other approaches.
A major factor in ensuring the outcomes is achieved is the intent of the person(s) driving it. This has also been the single largest factor in the success of DWM’s approach. Person(s) with right intent are able to leverage this approach effectively and enhance the probability of success of their journeys.
No. As mentioned earlier, DWM’s offerings are suggestive/ advisory in nature and a major part of success depends upon your abilities to execute. Hence, DWM per se, does not work on a success-fee model.
However, some of the partners/ associates may be able to work with you on a success-fee model. We invite you to mention that in your request for partner/ associate and we shall let them know. To be honest, it may limit the number of partners/ associates that may respond to your request.
In case you are uncertain about overall commitments then DWM recommends that you start small and set-up stage/ milestone-wise engagement plans with the partners/ associates.
If your question is not covered here, please use the Contact Us section to share it with us and we will try to answer is as soon as possible.