This Week in Consulting

Wednesday, February 19th 2020

Innovation 2020: more of the same?


Over the years, the phrase disruptive innovation has come to mean all manner of things to people. But the broad, sweeping implication that “disruptive” is synonymous with “ambitious upstart” is not correct, is it? How would you like to define disruptive innovation for the record?​”

Disruptive innovations are not breakthrough innovations that alter how business is done but, rather, consist of products and services that are simple, accessible, and affordable.

This Week’s Must Read  is an Interview with the late Clayton M. Christensen by Karen Dillon where they explore what do we know now about the power of disruption.

Read on to Find out More: “Disruption 2020: An Interview With Clayton M. Christensen | Karen Dillon for MITSloan.

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This week video is a podcast: Henry Chesbrough, adjunct professor at the University of California Berkeley Haas School of Business, coined the term “open innovation” over a decade ago​.


  • Why don’t leaders ‘get’ disruptive innovation? “Disruptive innovation is a victim of its own success. Since Clayton Christensen coined the term in 1995, it’s become the mantra of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs seeking investment for their apps and tech companies hoping to make their latest devices sound more exciting. It’s the buzzword of choice for on-trend executives, a blanket term that’s frequently applied to many new technologies, services and business practices.” The author explains that launching digital transformation without mastering disruptive innovation is useless. | Duncan Jefferies, Raconteur
  • When Disruption Hits Your Business Model – Surviving The Collision: “So much has been said about disruptive innovation, that it can sometimes feel that to be in a traditional, scaled business is to somehow be on a fast track to extinction. In fact, scaled businesses are remarkable success stories – to have survived from start-up to profitable-at-scale is no mean feat. The threat of disruption might be existential, but that doesn’t negate the fact that within the success of the current business lie the clues to the shape of the future business.” What are the innovation levers for your current business model to adapt to the disruptive changes in your environment? | Tobias Rooney and Tom Gray, Fahrenheit 212
  • Breaking Down the Barriers to Innovation: “To catalyze innovation, companies have invested billions in internal venture capital, incubators, accelerators, and field trips to Silicon Valley. Yet according to a McKinsey survey, 94% of executives are dissatisfied with their firms’ innovation performance. Across industries, one survey after another has found the same thing: Businesses just aren’t getting the impact they want, despite all their spending.” How can your organization develop and implement its own BEANs (Behavior Enablers, Artifacts, and Nudges) to unleash innovation? | Scott D. Anthony, Paul Cobban, Rahul Nair and Natalie Painchaud, HBR
  • Five Common Mistakes In Innovation: “There’s a growing consensus around what it takes to be truly innovative. Launch some great new products and services. Encourage your people to take risks. Get started on the long, hard work of creating metrics and processes that help employees engage with new ideas. That’s what the world’s most innovative companies are doing. But just because you know how to do something doesn’t mean you will do it.” Are you willing to make the cultural changes necessary to get more innovative? | Dev Patnaik, Jump.


  • Charging point manufacturer Pod Point acquired by EDF: “EDF, one of the ‘big six’ electricity providers in the UK, has acquired a majority stake in Pod Point, which manufactures home and public electric vehicle chargers.” | Dave Leggett, Just Auto
  • Oliver Wyman Sees Expansion Ahead for Aviation Industry Despite Challenges: “The next decade will be more challenging for the aviation industry than the 10 years previous years, despite prospects for rising passenger demand, according to Oliver Wyman’s annual Global Fleet & MRO Forecast.” | Oliver Wyman
  • McKinsey buys Orpheus: “This month, McKinsey announced it was acquiring Orpheus, a regional yet specialized (and highly capable) spend and procurement analysis provider based in Germany. For a primer on Orpheus and the acquisition, see our initial Nexus coverage” |Spend Matters
  • Changes to UK taxation could add billions to the economy: “A new report by professional services firms Alvarez & Marsal Taxand and Capital Economics has identified several post-Brexit tax changes that could provide the UK economy with billions in new economic value.” |


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Hélène Laffitte is the CEO of Consulting Quest, a Global Performance-Driven Consulting Platform and author of “Smart Consulting Sourcing”, a step by step guide to getting the best ROI from your consulting. With a blend of experience in Procurement and Consulting, Hélène is passionate about helping Companies create more value through Consulting.

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