I was a speaker / members at the KPMG Innovation Council meeting in Minneapolis today. I’ve attended several of these meetings in the past and it is a large group of Innovation and Technology directors from the twin cities. My talk was focused on Innovation trends and the impact and key capabilities needed to be developed by corporations. This was a great topic to involve this audience in as the Q&A really got the audience participating and sharing what their orgs are doing or how they are approaching key challenges.
Some insight that where shared by the group:
- Most of the organizations realized that innovation was becoming a key competency to remain relevant and competitive.
- Most organization where underway, but struggling to find the right organizational model.
- Many only had a small skunk works team.
- Almost all lacked the major capabilities of a mature innovation competency.
- Many struggled with funding and ROI metrics.
- Many acknowledged they did not have a culture that understood risk/reward, exploration, iteration/pivot, or failure/learning in general. This greatly complicated how people in the innovation areas where treated and the reward/punishment dynamics.
- Most looked at innovation as an internal function and there was a lot of questions about my examples of corporate collaboration & co-opition. Though several did say they were starting to put a focus on looking for start-ups.
- Most didn’t have formalized venture funding models.
One of the other speakers showcased the partnership between Optum, Mayo, and UMN around data sharing and analytics in health care. As I was working at the UMN, I had some insights into this collaboration. This was a great supporting example of how multiple entities could combine assets in a co-opition model where all would benefit and drive their respective business together. The analytics demo they showed was an amazing example of data visualization of healthcare information. They where able to visual show patterns and track cause and effect of various conditions and procedural outcomes. Given they are so far ahead in this area it suggests that some significant disruptions could be coming to the health care industry sooner than later. Especially when you could see correlation to what insurance pays for and what actually works and the impact or lack there of around pharmaceuticals.
We also had a presentation from the State of MN CIO and Director of Innovation covering their initiatives around public data. Their goal is to create improved access, integration, and APIs to the public data sources of the state and support the eventual crowdsourcing uses of this data through promotions and contests. At Microsoft I had worked with a number of companies that where following this model of making some of there data public. The results I saw where very impressive in terms of the partnerships it attracted and the fantastic solutions that the contests produced that became new solutions for the company.
This group tends to meet quarterly and I’m looking forward to continued participation in the group!