Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Big Blue Brainstorm

IBM have recently undertaken an open innovation event or Innovation Jam as they call to collect ideas from some 100,000 minds, including employees, consultants, employees families and 67 clients from the Bank of America to Massachusetts Institute of Technology. By tapping into the wisdom of crowds IBM are looking to transform industries, alter human behaviour, and ultimately lead IBM to new business.

With IBM’s stock value remaining fairly flat for the past 3 years the impetus to do something different is very strong within the company. The company’s current reputation for constant incremental innovation hasn’t inspired investors. This commitment to do something very different is clearly singled by the company CEO, Samuel J. Palmisano who is investing $100 million behind the strongest ideas as they hunt for grand-scale innovation breakthroughs around the four topics of transportation, health, the environment, and finance and commerce.

We are seeing more and more companies embracing open innovation strategies to engage people through their various partnership networks, from employees families, retirees, clients, and suppliers to name but a few. In doing so these companies are turning to experts, like Imaginatik, to provide the necessary ‘Innovation Infrastructure’ that unlocks a companies potential to engage in ‘World Class’ open innovation programs. The landscape for idea generation is no long bounded by a companies four walls. These boundaries are breaking down as corporate innovators are extending their networks as they look to embrace the rich diversity of people from outside their organisations.

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