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Live from FEI EMEA 213: CO-CREATE: The Collaborative Innovation Process

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Pierre Swart was the first speaker in the Customer Driven Innovation Summit for the FEI EMEA 2013 event, and the audience was fresh, expectant and attentive. About a third of the room were from large corporations. The title of the talk is an acronym that reminds you of the steps in the collaborative innovation process - a good way to ensure people will retain the concepts presented in this talk.

The presentation was separated into three distinct areas:
1. Classic Traps
2. The Colour of Knowledge
3. Co-Create

Classic Traps covered the obstacles organisations can put in place that actually hinder innovation, rather than promote it. Examples included: the expectation that innovations neatly fit into the larger corporate strategy, or that innovation only comes from the R&D division. An excellent warning from Pierre, 'don't create two citizens in your organisation - those who innovate and those who don't'.

The Colour of Knowledge was a nice visual tool to remind us that we all may start in an organisation on the same page regarding a new project, but as we gather more information, it can 'colour' our view of the success or outcome of the project. It is important to keep communicating across and through the organisation so these insights are shared.

Finally Pierre presented his CO-CREATE process, an acronym describing the 7 steps to take an idea through to execution. These steps are: COmpile team, Challenge, Research, Explore future, Assemble ideas, Test ideas and Execution plan. Although described as simple, it certainly does not mean it will be easy.

There was a good number of questions at the end, with a clear indication from the discussion of the importance of leadership and team buy-in for any innovation or process to work. Pierre provided a nicely balanced presentation and a good start for the morning.

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