An open innovation success story

We have a particular key learning to share along with an open innovation success story. First, let’s briefly go over Collective Creativity.

We talked a lot about the Collective Creativity principle and its importance in not only our business world, but society. For those new to the term, it’s been popularly coined by Harvard business professor Linda Hill. In a nutshell, she studied the world’s most innovative and creative companies and came to a particular discovery.

In her TED talk presentation, she discussed the creative activity that stems from the contribution and collaboration of individuals. Definitely do check out the talk if you haven’t yet:

As technology continues to rapidly advance, it is commonly discussed how crucial it is for human-centric design to be embedded in almost all aspects of our business and organizational handlings. Perhaps we can even say that human-centricity is needed more than ever in today’s Age of Innovation.

As we are now in the new year of 2018, the power of innovation through Collective Creativity is not dying down. From the actual use cases we experienced within Be-novative (we compiled eight of them in this free ebook), the success stories continue to roll in. Here is a key learning we’d like to share with you going into the new year:

Don’t be afraid to involve the broadest possible combination of contributors regardless of seniority, roles or subject matter expertise.

The story

Our success story with Telenor, a telecommunication company, comes to mind. Continue reading for a quick breakdown of how — through tapping into an “unlikely” source — they discovered their new premium service and achieved:

$100k/month new revenue stream
400,000 customers for their new service within four months

Telenor initially identified their pain point as a customer service optimization effort, but it soon enough spilled over into a need to develop a new digital mobile service. A team worked on the project for three months. As they built up a concept, an important factor seemed to be missing: creative solutions. As their deadline loomed close, the final proposal could not take shape.

This is when the CEO stepped in and expanded the effort to the whole organization. He was curious about what would happen if every employee could contribute their ideas; he also wanted to drastically reduce time investment for the initial ideation phase.

A crowdsourcing open innovation challenge was launched.

Hundreds of suggestions were collected and evaluated by employees across the board. The results had two major surprises:

1) The winning solution closely aligned with what the original project team was working on, but at a much higher level of maturity.

2) The breakthrough concept originated from a source far removed from the boardroom. It came from a mobile store clerk who knew the customers’ pain first-hand.

The project plan was ready within a week — implementation occurred seamlessly and faster than planned. A new premium service was launched with results in new revenue, customer acquisition, and with customer service costs saved.

Nurture an innovation community.

The newfound success found its way into Telenor’s innovation DNA as a continuous, bottom-up practice. A team of volunteers launches strategic priority innovation challenges on a monthly basis for the whole organization, building project plans for the C-level Innovation Board.

Now, that is what we call Collective Creativity in action. Disruptive ideas come from unlikely places. Create a truly borderless innovation community by involving everyone.

Telenor’s open innovation challenge was virtually held on Be-novative’s online platform. Create your own and creatively collaborate with others (it’s free!)

Be-novative is a Design Thinking and Innovation platform that helps organizations build breakthroughs collaboratively. @benovative

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