“Sometimes working at the front-end of innovation can be a lonely place.

Connecting with so many other innovation professionals acted as a shot of adrenaline reigniting my drive to transform our organization. This was a refreshing reminder that we’re not alone.”

We’re making good progress addressing the multiple challenges covering the full breadth and depth of innovation in large organizations. Of course, most of these challenges aren’t easily solved, but the confirmation that others are facing similar obstacles and a good conversation about ways to overcome them does go a long way.

Here’s a glimpse of what we’ve discussed in the fifth week of the Innov8rs Connect Unconference.

Growing Your Innovation Efforts? How to Structure and Professionalize Your Innovation Lab

Are you at a point that you have to scale your innovation efforts, while the board is asking to prove your actual value?

Esther Gons talked about the conditions of professionalizing innovation. What are common practices? How do you start measuring innovation and report to the board? How do you structure innovation company-wide?

In this snippet, she took us through the prerequisites of professionalizing and structuring innovation. One of the key concerns is getting clarity about what exactly innovation means, as she articulates nicely in this short snippet from her session.

Innovation Accounting

Generally, financial folks do not always get innovation KPI’s. In his #Innov8rs Connect Unconference session, Dan Toma guided us through the latest in Innovation Accounting.

One of the participants asked: what KPI’s are useful for us as innovators, ánd are working with controllers? And what KPI’s are strong for us, but those controllers… they don’t see it?

Future Ready

We all know legacy organizations were not built for speed. There is an increasing need to become a Future Ready organization today, so one can leap ahead and stay competitive, especially given all the forces of change in these turbulent times.

In his new book, the #1 Best Seller “Future Ready,” Nick explores how organizations can leverage this new framework to develop an aligned vision of their future ahead, quickly build new future focused customer value, develop the leaders of tomorrow, and shift mindsets to a culture of exponential thinking – from Unovation to Inovation, as you can see in this snippet.

How to Solve Big Problems Faster With Remote Design Thinking

Right now, the ability to mobilize remote teams to innovatively solve strategic problems is a critical survival skill, and promises to be a lasting source of competitive advantage for the future. Suddenly, when going remote, a lot of new possibilities have opened up as Adam Billing shares in this snippet.

Growing Your Capability for Innovation – How You Can Choose and Communicate the Right Innovation Strategy

With limited resources and funding, you need to make the right choices as innovation team.

Peter Glasheen & AJ Kennedy shared different leadership styles for innovation: the Spiral Staircase, the Cauldron, the Fertile Field, the PacMan and the Explorer.

Here’s a nice chart of how, when and where these styles apply.

We Can’t Build Tomorrow Using Yesterday’s Tools: The Evolving Face of Change

One of the hardest things in business is not falling in love with our own ideas. Instead, we should always test our assumptions.

Scott McDonald and Anuraag Verma reviewed recent advances in teams, tools and techniques, and how they’re coming together to create a new world of possibilities for organizations to drive innovation.

Cracking the Code to Better Cross-Functional Collaboration

Anyone engaged in innovation knows it’s a team sport that needs cross-functional collaboration. But why is collaboration so hard?

It turns out collaboration isn’t as much about the innovation tools you use as it is about how you engage people in problem solving. And, after a year-long global research study by BridgePoint Effect, FourSight and Innov8rs, it turns out innovators approach problems differently than pretty well everyone else in the organization.

Here’s what Janice Francisco shared about this in her session.

Framing the Case for Change in 1-2-3

Most participants joining Carolina Wosiack’s session recently during #Innov8rs Connect Unconference recogznied this list of “innovation illusions”… Tactics that by themselves will never lead to any meaningful outcome.

Carolina then went on to share how small experiments can make a case for change, moving people from opinions to data-driven decisions, resulting in business impact in 90-day cycles.

Financial Modeling: From Fuzzy Early Stage Project to Scaling Up

empathy sounds great, but where are the numbers?

Mapping empathy into a spreadsheet is hard. Early stage innovators and the finance team need to come together to help map qualitative data into business cases that can be used to make go / no go decisions.

But instead of just creating two worst / best case scenarios, we can represent uncertainty and use it to guide our product experimentation. Tristan Kromer walked us through how to create a financial model from fuzzy data.