|To Boldly Go|
|Topic||Technology, Innovation, and Change|
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risk, innovation, corporate culture, technology, regulation
Risk? What risk? Nowadays, most managers think that risk is too risky. Most R&D departments are on hold. And most firms are focused on protecting their current products, not creating new ones. But innovation still has its place in today’s recessive economics. In fact, those firms that take the risk now to introduce new products may reap the rewards later as they surpass their slow-moving competitors in the world market.
A survey of more 750 businesses in seventeen countries found that one factor translated into true financial value—radical innovation. And one element determined whether that innovation was created—corporate culture. More than any other aspect studied, including the home country, an organization’s corporate culture—the set of attitudes, values, and policies that define a firm and its members—determined whether a firm was willing to take a chance in the marketplace.
This culture means that a firm is willing to cannibalize its current successful products so it can develop and launch radically new ones. It is willing to train and educate its employees, and allow them to compete among themselves. It keeps an eye on local regulations and technical developments as well as those found elsewhere. Traditional elements in industrialized countries (such as government, labor, and capital) have become less important. New ideas now attract capital across the board, and across the world, often regardless of the country or financial base. These innovative firms tend to have similar open-minded and free-thinking corporate cultures.
How are such forward-thinking corporate cultures created? Several suggestions are made:
“To boldly go.” Accountancy Age, Feb 5, 2009 p20.
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