Recipe: How to Bake Your Own Silicon Valley

I’ve visited many a region that’s interested in creating its own “Silicon Beach/Mountain/Cliff/Island/Plane/Desert,” and that is truly wonderful. Along the way, I’m often asked what makes Silicon Valley successful. The elusive recipe need not be hidden in a vault or passed down from Nana to her next of kin. Here’s a tried-and-true recipe that was handed down generation to generation in Silicon Valley for 60-plus years. Yes, it’s a family secret, but I’ll share it with you now. INGREDIENTS: A culture that embraces failure. Only 5% of startups win, but they win big. Yet embracing the other 95% is required for persistent innovation. Ample education in technology & entrepreneurship. Successful tech regions have multiple colleges and a culture of continual … Continue readingRecipe: How to Bake Your Own Silicon Valley

Corporate Innovation: When to Build and When to Buy

Should large, established companies innovate internally or just acquire successful startups? This post is part of our continued series on Corporate Innovation, in preparation for a research report, on this topic. Last week, we published  The Ten Types of Corporate Innovation Programs which looks at broad swath of options, and in this post, we’ll dive into two major choices that companies are often weighing out: building their own, or acquiring startups. Build: Corporations invest in building innovation internally, but with risks to their success. The upside of companies building their own startups from within is that they can tailor them to their specific business strategy. I’ve spent time with Nestle, which successfully built out its home coffee line, Nespresso, to … Continue readingCorporate Innovation: When to Build and When to Buy

The Ten Types of Corporate Innovation Programs

Large, established companies are trying on various programs to foster new innovations in an attempt to find the best way to change course for their big ships. These established companies are struggling to keep up with fast-paced, venture-backed startups that are changing customer expectations — and often causing business model disruption for traditional businesses. To combat this ever-growing threat, corporations are stepping up their investments in innovation and deploying a variety of strategies, as outlined in the following table. As founder of Crowd Companies, an Innovation Council, we work directly with these innovation teams and have been able to observe and document these types of programs. Often, companies are combining strategies and deploying multiple efforts at any given time. In … Continue readingThe Ten Types of Corporate Innovation Programs

“BMW Welcomes” Explores the Future of Mobility (Video)

What moves us tomorrow? That’s the question BMW posed to its expert speakers at BMW Welcomes, held at BMW Welt in Munich, Germany, on June 23. where I served as emcee of event. BMW Welcomes gathers transportation futurists from around the globe to examine topics from Hyperloop to space travel. In this video you’ll learn: What is the future of mobility? How is the space industry going to enable change? How will Hyperloop going to change transportation? And more. What ensued was riveting conversation about the future of mobility and how major automotive players and international technology innovators are rethinking car ownership in favor of new transportation innovation and sharing behaviors. The Collaborative Economy will play a role, though it’s only a … Continue reading“BMW Welcomes” Explores the Future of Mobility (Video)

Want to inspire Intrapreneurship in your company? Open this box

Can you let your employees take charge of innovation – with little managerial oversight? When employees are empowered to make a difference on their own – to lead rather than follow a managerial directive – the innovation process takes on a life of its own. Adobe Kickbox, a physical box of practical tools and resources for employees to innovate rapidly and independently, fosters innovation in every pocket of the company. It helps capture grassroots innovation happening at the edges of the internal network. At more than 11,000 employees, Adobe is a large software company in the heart of Silicon Valley. Such companies can struggle to keep talent when the best and brightest are often lured away by promises of lucrative … Continue readingWant to inspire Intrapreneurship in your company? Open this box

Future Proofing: Ten Ways Big Companies are Staying Agile

A CEO of a new startup in Silicon Valley confided in me over beers that he said it’s easy for startups to disrupt big companies as they’re so busy internally fighting themselves. He’s right, I mostly see companies in internal battles and struggles over resources and power, leaving them exposed to outside startups. Coincidently, may of the startups I see disrupting large companies are composed of ex-employees who recombine as they know the weaknesses to exploit these larger companies, damning!  To stay Future Proof, I’m seeing at least ten trends larger corporations are applying in the last year to stay lean and agile. Ten Ways Big Companies are Staying Agile: While there are limitless methods on how companies can innovate … Continue readingFuture Proofing: Ten Ways Big Companies are Staying Agile