Industrial Sector

Go small or go home – why most companies fail to innovate radically

Radical Innovation in industrial companies
2 minutes to read

Why are so many companies great at incremental innovation, but at the same time fail badly with radical innovation – and how can this be changed? We explored these questions in our latest study.

In recent decades, the world we live in has seen significant change. The internet has become omnipresent, smartphones have replaced the Swiss Army knife as the default tool for all kinds of tasks and technological, environmental and cultural changes are driving a significant shift in needs, expectations and opportunities for employees and customers alike. While it’s hard to predict the future, it’s quite safe to say that we’ll see further significant changes in the coming decades.

Based on Darwin’s principles: in an environment of increasing change, it isn’t the strongest who survive, but the ones capable of adapting to the changes around them. And therefore, it’s essential not only to be able to improve, but also to step out of the known and change more radically as an organisation.

Findings, dynamics and solutions

In over 60 personal interviews covering more than 28 large industrial companies in Switzerland, Austria and Germany, we took a deep dive into these questions and found a surprisingly consistent picture of innovation blockers and success factors. Additionally, a single success pattern presented itself for all successful attempts.

In the publication ‘ImpulZe: Go small or go home – why most companies fail to innovate radically’, we discuss the findings of our interviews and the corresponding patterns that led to success, the underlying dynamics we determined to be the cause of those effects and the requirements for a systematic solution to this significant challenge.

Radical innovation: go small or go home