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Report from the OI Masterclass – Part I

Last week I gave a two-day Masterclass seminar on Open Innovation. We had 17 participants (all of them CEOs, Open Innovation Managers or Innovation Managers) were taking part, most of them coming from the Chemical industry, Fast Moving Consumer Goods, Aerospace and Metals.

The seminar was rated with 1.6 on a scale from 1 (best) to 6 so that the discussions probably are very relevant to the current state of discussions on Open Innovation in Germany.

At the beginning I did a quick survey and asked ‘How is Open Innovation perceived in your firm?’. The answers could be summarized in five viewing angles:

  1. ‘Open Innovation is a turbo for a reframing / restructuring of innovation management’
  2. ‘Open Innovation is an extension of our innovation management – As well in breadth as in depth’
  3. ‘Open Innovation is a lever for achieving breakthrough innovations’
  4. ‘Open Innovation gives us the language to substantially discuss innovation networks and ecosystems’
  5. ‘Open Innovation is an approach for structured technology scouting and evaluation’

After an initial framing of Open Innovation we made an in-depth analysis of global OI benchmarks such as DSM, IBM, Kraft Foods and Eli Lilly. The key take-away from this part of the seminar was that Open Innovation means different things for different firms – an yet all of them won agility, effectiveness and efficiency in their innovation management.