Image courtesy of Flickr user soleir.

Fall 2011
Volume 53, Issue # 1

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Image courtesy of Flickr user soleir.

The Age of the Consumer-Innovator

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 18 min 

It has long been assumed that companies develop products for consumers, while consumers are passive recipients. However, this paradigm is flawed, because consumers are a major source of product innovations. This article suggests a new innovation paradigm, in which consumers and users play a central and active role in developing products. The article also summarizes key findings from studies on consumer product innovation conducted in the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan.

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Image courtesy of Flickr user Electrolux Design Lab.

Should You Have a Global Strategy?

  • Research Highlight
  • Read Time: 11 min 

Senior executives weighing strategies appropriate for today’s global economy will hear contradictory advice. Some say you need to move quickly, before competitors, to establish a worldwide presence; others cite data showing that this approach is often less profitable. The reality is that neither approach is appropriate for every circumstance. Therefore, executives need to understand when to pursue one route and when to pursue the other.

Image courtesy of Flickr user smi23le.

The 2011 Richard Beckhard Memorial Prize

  • Read Time: 2 min 

The editors of MIT Sloan Management Review are pleased to announce the winner of this year’s Richard Beckhard Memorial Prize, awarded to the author of the most outstanding SMR article on planned change and organizational development published from fall 2009 to summer 2010.

Image courtesy of Procter & Gamble

Is Your Company Ready for Open Innovation?

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 9 min 

The right open innovation strategy can yield performance benefits — but first your company needs to overcome “not-invented-here” and “not-sold-here” attitudes.

Image courtesy of KONE Corp.

The Art of Piloting New Initiatives

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 24 min 

Successful multinationals get that way by finding better ways to leverage operational improvements across the entire company. But developing such superior processes is not easy. New operational ideas fail for many reasons. One of the most common is not that the idea was bad, but that the developers set up a pilot that failed to persuade managers in the units that the process was an improvement. Successful pilots share three qualities: credibility, replicability and feasibility.

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Courtesy of Under Armour

Which Strategy When?

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 21 min 

Markets are changing, competition is shifting and businesses are suffering or perhaps thriving. Whatever the immediate circumstances, corporate managers ask the same questions: Where do we go from here, and which strategy will get us there? To figure out when it makes sense to pursue strategies of position, leverage or opportunity, managers must understand their company’s immediate circumstances, take stock of their current resources and determine the relationships among the various resources.

Image courtesy of Flickr user marcusnelson.

Creating Employee Networks That Deliver Open Innovation

  • Research Feature
  • Read Time: 23 min 

Companies such as Procter & Gamble, Cisco Systems, Genzyme, General Electric and Intel are often credited with having attained market leadership through open innovation strategies. By tapping into and exploiting the technological knowledge residing beyond their own R&D structures, these companies outmaneuvered rivals. But while other organizations try to follow their example, many are failing because they neglect to ensure that the outside ideas reach the people best equipped to exploit them.

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Christian Rynning-Tønnesen, President and CEO of Statkraft

The Power to Adapt: Building One of the World’s Largest Renewables Power Producers

  • Interview
  • Read Time: 11 min 

The ability to create strategies and adapt to changing conditions quickly is critical for maintaining a competitive edge, says Christian Rynning-Tønnesen, the CEO of Statkraft, one of the largest power producers in the world. Building the organizational structures to support that demands shared values and solid management.