By David Matheson, SmartOrg I was presenting the results of an in-depth portfolio review to the president of a major chemical company. “Will I meet my growth goals?” she asked. Every planning process in the company involved her setting a goal and the business units (BUs) responding with how they were going to meet them.
Download PDF By David Matheson, SmartOrg “I had never felt so badly about creating a success,” Michael, the CTO told me. He was in charge of a large R&D organization and he had a very cool, slightly quirky technology. He asked for many proposals for how to exploit it. Every time the financials came in,
Download PDF By David Matheson, SmartOrg At the Front End of Innovation event in Boston last month, Alexa Dembek of DuPont and Neal Gutterson of Corteva Agriscience shared their perspectives on navigating the Merger of the Century between DuPont and Dow Chemical. The merged DowDuPont has split into three separate publicly-traded entities: Dow for commodity
Download PDF By David Matheson, SmartOrg At a recent workshop, a group of 35 R&D and innovation executives in industries ranging from automotive to healthcare came together to benchmark improvement potential. Each selected a real example project from their portfolio and applied an estimation model based on benchmarks and experience developed at DuPont Safety &
Download PDF By David Matheson, SmartOrg Breakthrough innovation takes an organization out of its familiar comfort zone into a realm of uncertainty. Unlike incremental innovations into existing product domains and markets, where the behavior of technology and customers is well understood, breakthrough innovations entail using new technologies, selling to new kinds of customers, or both.
Download PDF By David Matheson, SmartOrg At first blush, you’d think that Decision Analysts have a lot to contribute to innovation. Innovators face tremendous uncertainty; Decision Analysts are experts at making decisions uncertainty. However, Decision Analysts and Innovators look at the world differently. Decision Analysts are deliberative and facilitative: they take time to carefully think
Download PDF By David Matheson, SmartOrg In the beloved classic children’s book Millions of Cats by Wanda Gag, an old man and an old woman decide to get a cat to be their companion. The Old Man sets out to find a pretty cat, and he comes across a valley full of… “…hundreds of cats,
Download PDF By David Matheson, SmartOrg Most portfolio evaluations I get involved in take a close look at innovation. Often there is a special innovation group responsible for the new, the wild, and the odd. The group names vary: common ones are “Ventures” or “Innovation” or “Central R&D.” There are great hopes for this group
Download PDF By David Matheson, SmartOrg The cost of an opportunity is, of course, the sum of the resources required to pursue a selected opportunity. Usually it is straightforward to add up this cost, although for innovation opportunities, uncertainties may make some part of the cost unforeseeable. However, when we consider the cost of an