Gooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooood day folks!

Our lovely Chief Customer Officer Sara Husk sat down with our friends at Innovation Leader for an insightful podcast on running high-performing innovation labs!

And what better person to ask than Sara! Her mind is a treasure trove of innovation best practices! She’s working with some of the most innovative brands in the world after all, and has insights into what sets high-performing innovation labs apart and sets them up for success!

SO! Naturally, she’s the perfect person to answer this kind of question:

“Are there innovation labs that that you’ve worked with that you think are role models?”

And naturally, she responds with this perfect answer:

I think where companies kind of get confused is that innovation doesn’t equal creativity. It’s that innovation really allows creativity to flourish when you have a great innovation process. So some of the things that they have in common are things like a clear vision and purpose. They’re aligned with the strategy, metrics and governance. Really, that’s a game changer for the innovation labs, I think. It’s like they owe the business an outcome, and so when that happens, it’s really interesting to see how much more successful they are.

Some of the best ones really are great at marketing their program. And what I mean by that is, you know, they share all kinds of stories. They make sure that they include cool new technology, but they also include things like what’s going on in operations? Or how do we do things that are new and interesting in finance? Or you know, those kinds of things that people don’t think of, but then they really network internally and share those stories wisely.

The other thing is really staffing, they they seem to have a good amount of staff, the right amount of staff, to be able to actually complete all the work that needs to be done, whether it’s the technology scouting, the prototyping, the marketing that they get a chance to Do managing that whole internal, that really that whole internal ecosystem that really seems to set them apart.

And lastly, “2020 is a year when any kind of an Innovation Initiative, whether it’s a lab or startup engagement program or corporate venture capital, is going to be under a lot of scrutiny. What advice would you give to innovators for surviving that scrutiny and sort of responding positively to that scrutiny?”

Sara says:

Innovation and innovators are really in a unique position to offer a lot of help and support and value in this time. I mean, if you really think about it, the innovation teams have so many tools at their disposal, whether it’s a you know, a software tool, a framework, like design thinking, any of those types of things. People need fast ways to think about things differently. The innovation teams are typically, you know, loaded heavily with creative problem solvers, people who can rapidly prototype. There’s so many ways to add value. I think it’s just potentially, shift the focus from those, you know, “What’s new? And what’s next?” to “How do we morph the current business to make sure that it survives the current environment.”

I don’t know about you folks, but I can’t help but read her responses without hearing her angelic voice in my head. Or maybe I’m just crazy.

Anyway! Check out the podcast, or check out Sara’s 7 Business Threat Challenge Starters Guide that Planbox clients have put into practice to come out on top amid the global health pandemic!

Til next time folks!