Put your best people on innovation

Many companies make the mistake of giving innovation projects to younger managers. It is natural to deliver innovative opportunities for enthusiastic and promising installations. But usually it's an experienced heavyweight that can overcome the entire process and political barriers that occur.

In September 1999, IBM CEO Lou Gerstner died deeply in a report saying that current pressure in the quarter had forced a business unit to reduce costs by halting efforts in a promising new area. Gerstner was afraid and wanted to find out how often this happened. He asked J. Bruce Herrald, IBM's boss, who oversees a policy to find out. Herrald found a similar pattern in at least 22 other cases. IBM had plenty of new ideas, but it was incredibly difficult to turn these ideas into business. IBM had produced many critical inventions, such as the connection base and the way, while others watched, such as Oracle and Cisco, making big businesses around them.

Herrald investigated the causes and concluded that IBM increased short-term and was attributable to the deliberate management of attention and resources to roll the dice. IBM's leaders did not spend much time on new companies and did not speak of their "A-Team" and # 39; management to run them. & # 39; We were moving this to inexperienced people, & # 39; said Herrald. & # 39; We did not put the best and bright talent on this. & # 39;

Gerstner and Herrald turn this approach. They put their most popular and talented managers in charge of Emerging Business Opportunities (EBO). Their task was to find areas that are new to IBM, which can lead to profitable billions of dollars, as well as companies for five to seven years. The program has been an amazing success. Between 2000 and 2005 IBM IBM launched 25 EBOs. Three failed and were closed, but after 22, annual income exceeded 15 billion krónur and growth over 40% per annum.

More important than their revenue feelings, EBOs helped change the culture of IBM. & # 39; We have become willing to try, willing to accept failure, learn from it and continue. The current EBO leader is a highly desirable job at IBM, "says Herrald.

Lexus from IBM is clear. If you want to change the culture of an organization so that it values ​​innovation and new business, your older and best people will be involved in these projects . Do not hide it in the lowest level and hope for the best.


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