Fast, iterative “virtual research centers” are edging out traditional approaches to R&D.
What’s happening this week at the intersection of management and technology.
H. James Wilson et al.
How human vigor and algorithmic rigor are joining forces in the sales function.
Raffaella Sadun (Harvard Business School), interviewed by Frieda Klotz
Raffaella Sadun explains how two traditionally connected technologies seem to pull companies in opposing directions
Special Report: New Product Development
Srivardhini K. Jha et al.
A successful innovation developed by Cisco’s R&D unit in India offers practical insights.
Companies often don’t focus enough on understanding how customers decide what to purchase.
Deborah L. Roberts and Frank T. Piller
Social media provides a game-changing opportunity to support innovation and new product development.
Michael Ballé et al.
Operational excellence requires cultivating an expectation for continuous improvement in all employees.
How can a business leader make the most impact on an organization? Open access to these three MIT Sloan Management Review articles about navigating strategic decisions in today’s digital world is provided courtesy of Columbia Business School Executive Education.
Joshua S. Gans
Businesses are averting disruption by beating their new competition, joining them, or waiting them out.
Robert D. Austin and David M. Upton
How can companies adapt themselves to the demands of super-transparency?
Peter Weill and Stephanie L. Woerner
To prepare for digital disruption, companies need to consider which of four business models to adapt.
May 10, 2016 | Nina Kruschwitz
Wireless localization technology could result in smarter homes, more efficient business, and password-free WiFi.
Robert Eccles (Harvard Business School), interviewed by David Kiron
New standards will integrate environmental, social and governance performance with financial information.
Donna Marshall et al.
Today’s supply chains are required to be lean, agile, sustainable, and — increasingly — transparent.
Lainey Garcia (McDonald’s USA), interviewed by Gerald C. Kane
Preparing the McDonald’s “Our Food. Your Questions.” campaign put the company through a kind of “culture shock.”
Hugh Scandrett (EnerNOC), interviewed by Sam Ransbotham
Energy intelligence software company EnerNOC is helping companies save money and cut back on energy usage.
Gerald C. Kane
How can enterprises balance the good and the bad of digital transparency?
Michael Pirson and Deepak Malhotra
Debates about assigning responsibility and meting out punishment rarely address the bigger issue: how to prevent major failures from happening in the first place. Indeed, when we focus primarily on punishment, without addressing the precipitating factors—both technological and organizational — we are inadvertently exposing ourselves to risk of recurrence.
One way to learn, argue Paul J.H. Schoemaker and Steven Krupp, is to “try to fail fast, often and cheaply in search of innovation.” Asking “what if” questions, they say, challenges executives to incorporate broader perspectives, stimulating “out-of-the-box dialogues that help leaders make better choices and find innovative solutions sooner.” Schoemaker and Krupp write that to help a team learn faster, leaders must frame mistakes as valuable learning opportunities.
Savvy executives know that they need to look for innovative ideas outside of their organizations as well as within it. Open access to these three MIT Sloan Management Review articles about working with outside innovation is provided courtesy of PwC.
Eric von Hippel et al.
Consumers generate massive amounts of product innovation — which has significant implications for new product development.
Kevin J. Boudreau and Karim R. Lakhani
Should external innovators be organized in collaborative communities or competitive markets? The answer depends on three crucial issues.
Yun Mi Antorini et al.
For the Lego Group, a close bond with user communities is not a pipe dream but a reality.
The Future of Mass Customization
April 13, 2016 | Wolfgang Gruel (moovel GmbH), Frank Piller (MIT Smart Customization Group and RWTH Aachen University), and Michael Fitzgerald
In an on-demand webinar, Wolfgang Gruel and Frank Piller detail new experiments in personal transportation. Gruel and Piller say that transportation customers are on the cusp of having seamless travel experiences that synchronize all transit options: schedules, traffic conditions, and personal preferences. But making this vision a reality requires knitting together previously independent systems — in part through smart data and the Internet of Things.
Jorge Walter et al.
Some reconnections are more beneficial than others. The challenge is selecting the best ones.
Davide Nicolini et al.
How can executives best distinguish usable information from distracting noise?
Yan Shen et al.
Six types of personal advisors can provide an important combination of psychosocial support and career support.
Silvia Bellezza et al.
Deviating from a dress code or other norms in appearance may help project an enhanced image.
Understanding Cognitive Technologies
March 15, 2016 | Thomas H. Davenport and Julia Kirby
Managers don’t expect to see machines displacing knowledge workers anytime soon. Instead, they expect computing technology to augment rather than replace the work of humans. But in the face of a sprawling and fast-evolving set of opportunities, what forms should that augmentation take? Davenport and Kirby, authors of “Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers in the Age of Smart Machines,” examine what cognitive technologies managers should be monitoring closely and what they should be applying now.