Where did the silos come from and who cares anyway?

Ever been in a large corporate organisation and wonder why there are silos between different departments and business units? Silos are barriers that restrict collaboration, the flow of information and worst of all they can destroy the company if left unchecked for too long. How many times have you heard of examples where one part of the company has absolutely no idea about what another part of the company is doing or someone complaining that a new product or service failed because department X didn’t get their act together?

Why does this happen? Most large companies are full of very clever people who have the right motivation and want to do right by the company. Most large companies grew out of smaller companies and when they were smaller the status quo couldn’t have existed so what changed?

There are lots of reasons for silos, some of them being:

  • Organisational culture and internal politics
  • Overloaded people just focusing on the smaller picture to get their immediate jobs done
  • Weak leadership
  • Inwardly looking departments and business units
  • The sheer size of the company – the bigger it is the more effort it requires to prevent silos
  • Different geographical locations and time-zones
  • Nature of the work doesn’t require lots of inter-departmental interaction

However, I’m going to pick on one cause of silos for this article, which isn’t in the list above and is not immediately obvious. It’s the one cause that I think is not spoken about that often but is actually one of the most important reasons for silos existing. So what is it……?

As a company grows from its scrappy roots it seeks to find a stable business model that is repeatable and profitable. The processes in the company are crafted to underpin the business model and when that happens the changes reduce in frequency until you reach a point of equilibrium. Sure tweaks happen here and there every once in a while, but the core of the business model and processes gets defined in the early phases of the company and they tend to stick. People then get very good at their jobs, understanding what needs to be done and the whole machinery starts to move to autopilot. It’s like driving a car, when you first start driving, remembering to do the right sequence of moves to get the car going seem very difficult and awkward. As you practise it all becomes second nature and soon enough you stop consciously thinking about how to drive a car, it just happens. Companies are no different, they learn a way to do things and that’s how it then happens henceforth with people rarely going back to take a wholesale view of the business model or processes that underpin it. The business model and processes embed themselves into the social fabric and DNA of the company. Is that a bad thing? It can be, in fact it can be a very bad thing.

When companies operate the same business model for a long enough time, people think that’s how you do business for everything. The company starts to view the world through the lens of their current business model and this is dangerous for companies in two cases. The first is that fundamental changes can occur in the industry that are extremely disruptive to your business model and the value chain. The world has changed but the company keeps approaching the problem the way its done before. This is probably one of the root causes of why many companies don’t last more than 40 to 50 years.

The second challenge for the company is when it tries to enter a new market or try a new business venture that requires a very different business model and processes, but guess what…..the company will apply the same rules it uses in its current business model to the new challenge or new market opportunity. That’s ok if the existing business model and processes can be applied to the new thing, but its a recipe for disaster if they can’t. Our dear friend Clayton Christensen has documented this in the three books he’s written on innovation so if you’ve not read then, I’d really suggest you do.

In the case that some people in the company do recognise the need to change the business model and processes, the silos make it extremely difficult to do so. There limited collaboration outside the BAU way of working and that’s when the silos are the companies worst enemy. When its time for a change, it requires multiple departments to club together and co-ordinate the changes.

Silos also prevent inter-department innovation. Any company has to serve and satisfy its customers and there are multiple departments that need work together. If silos exist those companies will find it harder to innovate across the entire customer life cycle.

So if one of the reasons for silos is because the business model has stabilised and the rules don’t change often then how do you get over this? Actually thinking about business models and processes as being static and not evolving is a very out-dated way of looking at things and harks back to a bygone pre-internet and communications era when things moved more slowly. In this world of instant communication things constantly evolve and change often very quickly. Changes that may have taken decades in the old world can happen in months and weeks today and only those adaptable and agile enough survive in today’s world. Companies have to take fundamentally different view to the way they manage and review their business models and associated processes. They have to view them as constantly evolving entities that if cultivated properly will provide the competitive edge over competitors and protect against threats. But whenever changes to the business model are required many people walk away from it because it requires large scale change across multiple departments and IT systems – the social and technical architecture make it a daunting task.

Avoiding silos across the organisation is achieved by fostering cross business working on a regular basis and not just for special projects that happen once in a blue moon. It should be ingrained in the companies culture that projects require people from all disciplines to be involved. This doesn’t happen naturally so there needs to be a concerted and concious effort to make it happen. People should be moved around between departments as a matter of course to extend their loyalties beyond their old departments. Regular communication channels across functions should be set up and this is where social media tools can help greatly so that people can see what’s going on in other parts of the company. I’m not a fan of the artificial corporate events where people from across the company meet – they do have limited impact and are fun but there needs to be common purpose and binding activity that allows people to work together across departments to deliver a common set of objectives.

Another important thing in my mind is that with today’s speed of evolution someone in the company needs to have responsibilities for monitoring and adapting the business model and processes. It can’t be left to individual departments. I personally see it as being the role of senior members of the organisation to break down the silos and ensure a free flow of people, knowledge and communication across the interfaces. These senior members are either board members or their direct reports. Junior people can’t make this happen.

Who in your company looks after the business models and processes? Who’s there making sure the company’s relevant in 20, 40 or 100 years time?

Simplicity – The art of good design

I was looking at the TV offerings from both Google and Apple (amongst others) the other day and it just struck me the difference in design philosophy of both companies and why I think Apple has a chance of success whereas Google doesn’t in this area.

Google has products made by engineers for engineers. Apple makes products for everyone else. Now I’m being a bit harsh on Google but if you want to see an example of difference in the design philosophy then look at the images below. In the image on the left is the Google TV remote control and on the right is the Apple TV remote control.

Which one do you think your mum and dad would find easier to use? No disrespect to Sony and Google, but did you guys think it was OK to launch with something akin to a laptop to control the telly? What was going through your heads?

By contrast, the Apple remote, in keeping the company’s design philosophy, only puts only the most essential things onto the remote. Apple focus on experiences and Google focuses on product and that’s the big difference. Apple understands the people who will use its product better than they understand themselves sometimes and it looks at the essence of what you are trying to achieve and it’ll keep removing features until there is literally nothing of value left to remove.

It’s the same design ethos that was applied to the iPod. MP3 players just before the iPod appeared were competing on features and functionality and they were getting increasingly complex. Apple came along and cut functionality back to the absolute basics of what it needed to be. The iPod itself wasn’t a great innovation in 2002 because others had already developed MP3 players, but what came along two years later completely transformed the music listening experience and accelerated iPod sales – what came along was iTunes. iTunes suddenly made it easy to find and download music to your device all at an affordable price. Apple changed the music listening experience, that until then was complex and fragmented, for the average consumer into an end to end customer experience. The graph below (from Wikipedia) shows the ramp up of iPod sales in 2005 when iTunes was launched.

Apple signed deals with all the major record labels and did what others had failed to do before, namely legally monetise music.

Another great example of innovation is the flip camcorder. Now most camcorders on the market require either a PHD in computing (or the mandatory 5 year old) to use them. They’re crammed with all sorts of features. Now I’m a photographer and consider myself pretty adept at using consumer electronics and photography stuff, but even I don’t use all the stuff they cram onto camcorders so what chance has the average person got?! So along comes Pure Digital Technologies, who release a flip cam that has just a couple of buttons on it. When Pure Digital were pitching the flip cam they used a slide with two images, one was a normal camcorder and another was the flip. The text underneath the normal camcorder said “Use this for special occasions”. Under the picture of the Flip the words were “Use this for everything else.” Brilliant! Simple and to the point.

Take note, innovation is more than just about more features and functionality, its about creating experiences and doing things simply. Think about your customers and give them what they want – no more!

Now for the record, I am NOT an Apple Fanboy……I am a fan of Google however, so I hope they learn the lessons of making things accessible and creating an experience for everyone and not just the engineers.

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Becoming a Telco 2.0

Unless you live on planet Mars there is no escaping the fact that the way people communicate has evolved significantly in the past 7 years. 15 to 25 year olds are spending a majority of their time communicating via social media sites rather than the “traditional” modes of communication such as voice, text and email. In fact some of the younger kids don’t even use voice. Even though data from operators shows that SMS is continuing to grow, its unclear what proportion of these texts are simply to send data to social networking sites rather than peer to peer communication.

These changes in communication habits have serious implications for operators because it could just turn them into bit pipes – carrying bits and bytes for communication applications. Lot’s of people argue that this inevitable. I’m inclined to agree that the risk of operators being relegated to bit pipes is high, but I’m also an optimist and think that operators can have a bigger and better role than just being the pipes. However, achieving this will require a significant effort on behalf of the operators to rise to this challenge.

Developers, developers and developers (and platforms too!)

So I’m guessing many of you will have heard the Steve Ballmer pitch to developers and gushing about how important they all are. Ok he may have been slightly over enthusiastic about the way he expressed it but he had a very good point. Microsoft knows it needs developers to innovate and create new products and services; operators need to come to the same realisation and fast.

There are two things that I think operators need to be mindful off when considering their execution strategies. The first is that historically operators haven’t been very successful in creating products and services beyond their core offerings. History is littered with the failures of operator initiatives to create new products and services, especially in the internet space. These failures have occurred for a host reasons but essentially developing products and services that customers want, particularly in a web centric world, require a completely different execution strategy and mindset to the one operators are used to.

The second key thing is that world is changing in terms of the way people buy and sell both goods and services, or put another way, the value chain is changing. This was really nice summed up  by Sam Ramji in his presentation entitled Darwin’s Finches on why APIs are important. Increasingly things are being patched together and sold in different ways and what you are selling may well be a component of someone else’s customer value proposition rather than being the customer value proposition. As an example of what I mean is customers may want to purchase an app that uses SMS capabilities to send the bits and bytes back and forth. The app provider may do a deal with an operator to provide the SMS bearer (i.e wholesale SMS) and its the app provider who delivers the customer value proposition, charges the customer and has the primary relationship with the customer. The SMS capability is in this case  just a component in delivering the overall customer value proposition. The permutations of this in a Web mash up world are endless so what operators need to do in this example is ensure that it’s their SMS capability that’s used and not some other operators. This means exposing your SMS capability through an API in a really simple and frictionless way. This is all about remaining relevant in an internet centric world. That’s why developers are so important. Developer are the people who use APIs from different providers to create customer value propositions and they’re the people who will increasingly be selling directly to customers. But attracting developers isn’t easy and requires significant effort. It requires a company to:

  • Adopt a new engagement model with developers. It requires nurturing a community that can have a two way dialogue with the operator.
  • Offer important and valuable capabilities via the APIs – it has to be compelling.
  • Adopt technologies and standards that are used by developers such as RESTful APIs and JSON – simpler more lightweight technologies. Sorry but SOAP isn’t going to cut it:-)
  • Have the right business model and revenue sharing agreements in place.

So let’s take this one stage further. Exposing capabilities is great, but if operators really want to be successful they need to embrace platforms from which they expose the capabilities via APIs. One of the best definitions I’ve seen on the web for a platform is:

A “platform” is a system that can be programmed and therefore customized by outside developers — users — and in that way, adapted to countless needs and niches that the platform’s original developers could not have possibly contemplated, much less had time to accommodate. This can be all done without the platform owner having to do anything at all.

(Apologies to whoever came up with this definition but I can’t find the reference to it right now so if you email me I’ll be sure to include your name.) Examples of platforms that we know and love are Facebook, Twitter and Jajah. The important thing is that by using Platforms, APIs and the developer community operators can ensure that the remain relevant in the new communications paradigm and leverage innovation from beyond their own organisations.

A lot of this value creation today emanates directly from software. Telcos have got to learn to master software and not be overly reliant on others to do this for them. Delivering new products and services means they can’t just be picked up off-the-shelf and creating them requires in-house teams working in close collaboration with all parts of the organisation. (Please note that I said a lot of the value comes from software, not all of the value).

It’s not over just yet

Even though operators haven’t been entirely successful creating new products and services to date, that doesn’t mean its over just yet and being the optimist that I am, I think operators can still execute in way that not only uses platforms and exposes capabilities via APIs, but also sees them directly using the same capabilities to create customer value propositions to reduce time to market and cost, as well as bringing new innovations to the market. The execution strategy has to outline how you:

  • Attract the right talent and people into the company – lots of the creative people you need don’t naturally gravitate to large corporates. People need to “get” the new world of the internet and embrace it, seeing it as an opportunity. Just because someone works in IT doesn’t mean they “get it” – sorry but all techies aren’t equal.
  • Allow people the freedom to create – creativity can’t just be planned or switched on, it has to be nurtured. Freedom to create also means using different approaches and breaking some of the old rules that exist. People have to be allowed to try new things and the organisation has to ensure that constraints are not placed on things because it doesn’t fit for example with the “brand” or it might be risky. People also need to be given time to do things beyond their day job. A big killer for creativity is not having time or feeling pressured.
  • Allow people to work outside of the old culture and processes – the culture and processes in most operators is finely honed for their existing business models not the new world that operators need to embrace. Operators need to figure out how they retain the old culture and practises for the core business, but then create a ring fenced capability to help build out the new world that isn’t constrained or compromised by the core business.
  • Set aside money – Of course all of this effort requires cash. O and by the way you need to take a punt and stop the urge to carry out long range planning activities for everything.

Easier said that done right? Well unfortunately these are very significant challenge and they’re not easy to overcome. It will require people in the boardroom to champion some of these changes. It’s worth noting that these challenges aren’t unique to the telecommunications industry. Many industries face (and have faced) the same dilemma as the world around them changes and  innovators enter their industry to eat their lunch. Tackling these challenges is an imperative or operators could end up watching a car crash….in slow motion.

Changing preferences from 15-25 year olds

Making innovation successful – kill the barriers to innovation

I was speaking to a friend of mine Keith Edwards (founder of Spectrum Insight Ltd) about innovation in larger companies and he commented that the process you adopt for innovation is actually less important than removing the barriers to innovation. There is definitely something in that. A lot of the focus is put on getting the innovation process right, but actually what does undermine a lot of the innovation effort is the barriers within a company.

There are some really smart people in the company and everyone intellectually gets the need for innovation (in fact I’ve yet to find someone who thinks it’s not a good idea!), but as soon as you try and put an innovation process in place that’s when the hurdles come out. So what are the barriers to innovation that I’m talking about? Here are a few of them:

1. Headroom for people to innovate – Most companies in today’s competitive environment operate quite lean and efficient operations. The machinery is geared towards the core business activities and efficiency and longer term planning is critical. So when headroom is required to do some innovation people can be just too busy to engage. Lots of people would like to, but they’re concerned that they can’t do their day job or their manager might think less of them for it. Closely linked to this is point 5 below too.

2. Unsuitable processes – Whether you consciously think about it or not, businesses follows processes to getting things done. I use processes in this context in a very broad way and not just about the detailed flowcharts that people think about. The innovation may need a different way of doing things to be successful but the company will inadvertently try and force fit it into its existing processes because “that’s the way things are done around here”.

3. Death by a thousand cuts – This is sort of linked to point 2, but to emphasize the point I’ll deal with it separately here. In any corporate organisation there are many departments and functions that’ll want to have a say on how things should be done. Now each and every individual request to change the innovation in itself is probably a really good idea and seems like common sense, but the cumulative effect of all these reasonable requests is enough to compromise the whole innovation to the point that it is devalued or no longer feasible.

4. Funding – Innovation activities don’t always naturally fit into the annual planning cycle that most companies operate. This means that when it comes to an adhoc request for funds to implement an innovation idea, there isn’t the money or at the very least its not easily accessible.

5. Reward and incentives – Getting people to participate in innovation and make time for it  requires the right cultural framework to be in place to encourage innovative behaviours. This often means that people need to incentivised or rewarded. Look carefully at whether your organisations culture encourages the right behaviours for innovation through reward and incentive.

6. Senior level engagement – I’ve spoken about this in a previous blog, but its vital that senior managers in the organisation encourage innovation behaviours. This doesn’t mean just saying complimentary things but actually engaging in the process so that others see this and think “ok if he’s involved its got to be a good thing”.

So what’s the solution to overcoming these barriers? Well I’m afraid there is no single answer and it’ll depend on the company, the culture, the industry and what you are trying to do amongst other things. Being aware of the barriers is the first step to removing them. So when you are designing a new innovation process or trying to understand why the current one isn’t working then look at the barriers above and ask yourself if any of these are the reasons.

Remember most people genuinely are in favour of more innovation but there are some sound reasons why rational people seem to be hindering rather than helping. It’s not their fault!

The different approaches to innovation

I’ve been studying a lot of different approaches to innovation adopted by some of the leading brands for some time but something that strikes me as odd is that there appear to be two very distinct approaches to innovation that do things very differently but still churn out some amazing results.

There is what I’ll call for the purposes of this article the “standard” or well known approach to innovation where you have an innovation funnel of ideas, rely on internal and external crowd sourcing for ideation, use customer driven design techniques and perhaps engage with open innovation. This is the approach that is adopted by the likes of Adobe, IBM, 3M and Proctor and Gamble. This form of innovation has shown to yield some fantastic results for the participants.

However, I then look at companies like Apple and they don’t use the innovation methods used by the companies I’ve described above, but they still come up with some wow stuff! Apple is extremely secretive internally and employees often don’t often know what colleagues are up to. Apple doesn’t crowd source internally, it doesn’t go out to its customers to ask what they want and yet it consistently comes up with disruptive game changing innovation. How’s that work? Apple is not alone though, there are other companies, for example in Italy, who also adopt a similar approach to innovation as Apple. They offer things to the market that simply don’t seem to make sense at first and if you were to ask customers what they think about them you’d probably get very negative results. So how do these companies do innovation so effectively?

I was then recommended to read a book by Roberto Verganti called Design Driven Innovation and suddenly this alternative approach to innovation seemed to make sense. I’m not going to describe everything Verganti’s says but in essence some of the salient points he makes are:

  • Design driven innovation is the key to success and is very different from customer driven innovation techniques.
  • Asking customers what they want or watching what they do with your existing products is not going to necessarily lead to ground breaking innovation. Asking customers what they want will tend to lead to small incremental improvements.
  • Disruptive innovation comes from bringing new meaning to things. An example he cites is the Nintendo Wii which changed the meaning of game consoles by making the interaction more immersive involving your whole body where as to date Xbox360 and PS3 only required your thumbs to play. In addition to that the Wii opened up game consoles to many more people and it was much more social activity. The other interesting thing to note is that Wii was far cheaper to make than the Xbox360 and PS3 but outsold both of those consoles.
  • In order to give new meanings to things requires extensive research looking at the alternatives for how things might be used.
  • Real breakthroughs come when you can leverage a new innovative technology and provide new meanings to things at the same time.

Going back to Apple, they were the first laptop supplier to remove the optical drives from their MacBook Air. Steve Job’s said that “we do not think most users will miss the optical drive” and he was right, at least for many people, whereas up to that point everyone thought you just couldn’t make a laptop without an optical drive. He fundamentally changed the meaning of laptops. Apples then went further and did the same with the iPad. iPods is another good example of disruptive innovation. Apple didn’t invent MP3 players, nor were they first to market with this technology. But with a super slick design for the iPod combined with iTunes Apple created a new eco-system and changed the way music was consumed. He gave new new meaning to listening to music.

Another really convincing example that Verganti gives in his book is the Swatch Watch. Swatch and indeed most Swiss watch manufacturers were rapidly losing market share and revenue. Swatch came along and turned the watch into a fashion accessory at a very affordable price, which meant that people could own multiple Swatch watches and wear them to match an outfit. This gave a new meaning to wearing watches. No-one to date has been able to emulate Swatches success and indeed even though Swatches have been on the market for a while and easily copyable, it retains its market share and allure.

I have to be honest that even though Verganti thoroughly convinced me about merits of design driven innovation, his steps on how to achieve it left me feeling unconvinced or rather I felt something was missing. Over simplifying again what Verganti suggests is that companies need to build a network of people to collaborate with. This network could include designers, technology suppliers, the media, sociologists, anthropologists and so forth. These collaborates may come from many other industries. I think there is something in that, but the mechanics of how you go about doing it will probably require you to figure it for yourself. These networks of people could take many years to build and establish.

The challenge with what Verganti advocates is that it doesn’t follow a set process and its not easily reproducible. Well if was easy to do or copy then I guess everyone would be doing it! What distinguishes a very innovative company from others is mastering this process of innovation.

I’m not going to spoil the book for you other than recommend you read it, but what are the implications of what Verganti is saying? My take is that companies need to learn to master different approaches to innovation and don’t just rely on the methods that you commonly hear about. There are many ways to skin the cat.

So what do you think? Is there something in all of this or is Verganti barking up the wrong tree?

What’s this innovation stuff about?

So what is all that stuff you hear about innovation? It’s a word that seems to get thrown about all over the place and no universal agreement on what it means. To make matters worse companies often talk about innovation in all sorts of contexts because it happens to be the latest and greatest thing. In my personal experience few companies have actually understood the innovation process let alone actually implemented it. I’ve seen companies use the word innovation to describe:

  • Cost cutting
  • Standard roadmap projects
  • New products and services

Now none of these things are wrong and it is possible to be innovative in each of these things, but in my view this is just the tip of iceberg with respect to what real innovation is about. Borrowing from Wikipedia innovation is defined as:

Innovation is a change in the thought process for doing something, or the useful application of new inventions or discoveries.[1] It may refer to an incremental emergent or radical and revolutionary changes in thinking, products, processes, or organizations.

Innovation is not just about coming up with new ideas, it’s how those ideas are applied that makes innovation really different. Its important to point out that innovation can affect every aspect of a company. The innovation headlines are usually grabbed by new products and services, but actually some of the largest benefits of innovation come from anything but products and services. Innovation can be about how you finance projects, it can be about how you manufacture goods or it can be the business model you use to sell. In fact it can be about anything your company does.

Innovation is important to a company because it helps you stay ahead of your competitors. In today’s day and age standing still is not an option because someone will come along and eat your lunch. Here are some interesting stats:

  • The average life expectancy of a multinational corporation-Fortune 500 is between 40 and 50 years. This figure is based on most surveys of corporate births and deaths. A full one-third of the companies listed in the 1970 Fortune 500, for instance, had vanished by 1983-acquired, merged, or broken to pieces.
  • Of the 500 companies that appeared on the first list, in 1955, only 71 hold a place on the list today. (The 1955 list included industrial companies only, whereas today’s list also includes service companies.)
  • Nearly 2,000 companies have appeared on the list since its inception, and most are long gone from it.
  • Some of the most powerful companies on today’s list—businesses like Intel, Microsoft, Apple, Dell, and Google—grew from zero to great upon entirely new technologies, bumping venerable old companies off the list.
  • Some of the most celebrated companies in history no longer even appear on the 500, having fallen from great to good to gone from the list—companies like Scott Paper, Zenith, Rubbermaid, Chrysler, Teledyne, Warner Lambert, and Bethlehem Steel

But there are companies that continually buck the trend and they put innovation at the core of their organisations to stay ahead. Take for example Proctor and Gamble. It uses an innovation process called Connect and Develop to stay at the top of its game. Then there is Toyota which created Toyota University for innovation and has continued to grow while the rest of the car industry appears to be in severe decline like GM and Ford.

Putting in place a proper innovation process is something that makes innovation repeatable and systematic rather than relying on individuals or good luck to provide you with innovation. But that’s easier said that done right? How do you put in place a process that will yield regular and frequent innovation?

Both BCG and McKinsey’s have looked at innovation in large companies and their findings show that overwhelmingly senior executives are disappointed with the outcomes of the innovation efforts in their companies even though a majority place innovation high up the agenda. The reason is because execs don’t put in place the right process and tools for innovation to succeed. Innovation is about focusing on the details of your innovation process. The good news is that as a company you can indeed put in place a process for innovating but it requires many components to be in place for it to be successful, many of which will seem like common sense. Some key elements for making innovation successful include:

  • Dedicated resources to run the innovation process. Many companies make the mistake of thinking that people run an innovation process alongside their day jobs. While many contributors and participants in the innovation process can do this as part of their days jobs, the actual core innovation process must be run by people who eat, sleep and drink innovation.
  • Resources to implement the ideas. Collecting ideas from your people and then doing nothing with them is a sure fire way to disengage people. Make sure that the ideas go somewhere.
  • Senior level sponsorship is a definite key ingredient for success. Unless senior people get behind the innovation process and activities, it will always come a poor second to other priorities.
  • A robust process for innovation with key measures for success. The innovation pipeline from start to finish needs to be measured to ensure that every stage of the process is working. KPIs can be input and output KPIs, for examples the number ideas are entering into the ideation stage or the proportion of revenue coming from products and services launched in the past 3 years.
  • Communication, communication and communication! Telling people in the company about what is going on with the innovation effort is vital. This keeps the innovation profile high and will help to engage people. The communications should cover every aspect of your innovation effort.
  • Reward and recognition. If you get great ideas and they get implemented then make sure the people responsible for it are recognised and rewarded. Rewards don’t need to be large financial incentives, they can be the CEO or CxO recognising the achievements or small gifts. Lots of people are simply motivated by simply being seen to be innovators amongst their peers.

We’ll talk some more about innovation in later blogs, but I thought I’d at least get the subject on the table to start with!