We talked to Ajla about innovation and why she believes that it will be central for companies to continue to reinvent themselves.
- So, first of all, why is innovation important? “Several studies have showed that those companies that are good innovators command three times the market share, six times the revenue growth and three times the profitability than those companies that are poor innovators. Not only does innovation pose an opportunity for those that succeed, it is also poses a threat and companies that are not able to adapt or become the disruptor themselves will find it increasingly difficult to compete and risk becoming “Kodak””
- Why do so many firms find it hard to be innovative? “Because it is hard! Companies need to think about innovation beyond new products in a structured manner when creating new business opportunities. Innovation can also be centric around profit models, partnerships, customer experience, channels, brand… Successful companies are able to integrate and combine several of these different types of innovation to create a unique offering and a competitive advantage. Companies also struggle with setting their innovation ambition, i.e. deciding on whether they are ready for and need to challenge and change everything rather than reframing and adding quality to current offerings. This requires combining multiple perspectives and deep industry knowledge.”
- Tell us of a recent project where you helped a client solve these challenges? “I recently worked with household service company in identifying growth opportunities. Initially the client was focused on identifying new product and services, thus mainly extending their current portfolio. We helped them in identifying different types of opportunities, for example analysing how the company could utilise on trends such as Internet of Things and smart homes, customer experience through analytics and omni-channel as well as shared economy and becoming the Uber of household services. We also helped them in mapping how ready their company was for utilising different growth potential based on their current resources and preconditions.”