Last week during #Innov8rs Connect Unconference we explored key themes like covid19/crisis response, strategy and governance, ecosystems engagement, culture and venture building.

If you missed the sessions, here’s a glimpse of what we discussed.

Bouncing Forward

One of the key concerns for corporate innovators across industries is what to do now to ensure post-crisis growth.

From Frank Mattes, one of the thought leaders on building and scaling corporate ventures, we learned this comes down to three things:

(1) Understand the New Normal and the opportunities
(2) Have a critical look at the business assumptions and the portfolio
(3) Select the corporate startups / ventures that should be accelerated

Turning Challenges Into Opportunities

Especially in these times, many of us are facing tough challenges in our organization or market, are thinking about optimising our processes or resources or reinventing ourself but need to act with short time and budget.

No need to reinvent yourself if you can find the right switch to leverage your non-obvious resources.

With Nadine Meisel’s Lateral Shortcuts® approach it is possible to reframe and resolve your challenges easily and transform them into tangible opportunities.

Eat, Sleep, Innovate

For years, we’ve heard lofty aspirations from company leaders all wanting a “culture of innovation”.

In reality, most organizations however stifle innovation not by lack of ambition, but by the day to-day routines and rituals.

The good news? It’s possible to “hack” this problem.

Drawing on the behavioral-change literature and on our experiences working with dozens of global companies, including DBS, Southeast Asia’s biggest bank, Scott Anthony and colleagues devised a practical way to break bad habits that squelch innovation and to develop new ones that inspire it.

It involves setting up interventions we call BEANs, shorthand for behavior enablers, artifacts, and nudges.

Ecosystems: Dreams and Details

Ecosystems can be a crucial source of abundant innovation ideas and scalable learning, or even, inspire a complete rethink of what an organization is and how it operates, as in the case of Haier.

We’ve heard a long time ago that an organization, or in fact any organism, needs to be able to learn faster than its environment changes- and what we’ve heard from professor Bill Fischer might be the blueprint for putting that thought into practice.

Winning In The Low Touch Economy

The term Low Touch Economy refers to the way businesses across the globe have been forced to operate in order to succeed as a result of Covid-19.

To mitigate health risks, businesses have been forced to adapt to strict policies. We’ve seen shifts in consumer behaviours, new regulations and supply chain disruptions.

Multiple aftershocks in global markets can already be seen. And it ain’t over yet: medical experts and business leaders assume Covid-19 will directly influence the economy until late 2021. Businesses across industries will need to pivot to business models tailored to this new normal.

Nick De Mey shared the current state of the Low Touch Economy, companies that seem to respond well, and how and where to find opportunities for growth.

The Darker Side of Innovation

Professor Alf Rehn urgently yet eloquently challenged us to fundamentally rethink what innovation means, what we innovate for, and how we do it.

We’ve spent so much money on innovation over the last years, yet in return the best we’re getting is even more photo editing apps. And if we aren’t able to simply respect humans in our workplace, we better not think of innovation to start with.

But it’s not all dark and gloomy- it’s up to us to chart a new course.

The Acorn Method

Mature companies invest 10x more than VCs but are growing slower than before. To create real, lasting growth, you’ll need a new mindset, one that borrows from not just the startup world, but also the natural world.

Similar to how oak trees regenerate by dropping acorns that become new trees, you need to grow new lines of business within your existing organization. You need to learn how to build a forest—not just a bigger tree.