Sat. Aug 17th, 2019

How to really innovate in the era of digital transformation fever

How to really innovate in the era of digital transformation fever

Imagine a sneaker made of garbage. Or a digital tailor who takes the measurements thanks to some sensors and sends us the clothes directly. Or think about how good an "antiphone" would go connected to our mobile to limit the flood of notifications we receive per day. Well, no. It is not part of a chapter of the futuristic Black Mirror series: it is reality and is already happening (or will happen shortly).

"Innovation is a necessity for success. If the first wave of the internet, between 1985-99, was based on building that network, and in the second (200-2015), the center of the hurricane was occupied by the mobile and apps revolution, the third, which began in 2016, the Internet of all things, has a clear opportunity: innovation. You have to see the opportunities faster than the competitor and now the opportunity is to innovate. " It is the convincing statement of the professor of management and innovation of IMD Business School, Howard Yu, within the framework of the day Business Innovation Now Accenture has held at its headquarters in Barcelona.

"Innovation is a necessity for success. But not only refers to the technological, you have to innovate thinking about the consumer. Howard Yu, IMD Business School.

But we're not just talking about innovation in technology. More important, if possible, is the innovation that transcends the technological and cares about what the consumer really wants. Thus, since 1975, the 500 richest organizations in the world have attracted investment because they have been able to give value to intangible assets (human capital, data), beyond the tangible classics (technology, real estate ...), according to the needs of the consumer. We must diversify in innovation.

After two decades of rapid growth and technological innovation, there has also been great confusion. "And now", according to Héctor Ibarra, responsible for Fjord, the design and innovation division of Accenture Interactive, "we are at a technological, political and environmental inflection point. The digital world needs a thorough cleaning: the time has come to decide what continues to have value for our lives. We have realized that the negative side of having a mobile phone or putting on clothes every day is push notifications or that we are loading the planet, "he says.

"We have realized that the negative side of having a mobile phone or putting on clothes every day is push notifications or that we are loading the planet." Héctor Ibarra, head of Fjord, the design and innovation division of Accenture Interactive.

Hence, we begin to value both the digital silence (with the "antitphone") and sustainable products and services (those sports recycled Adidas brand, or clothing Patagonia firm, born in the purest environmental activism) . Not to mention the minimalism of the data (which only ask for the essentials and that are treated with maximum transparency by those who own them). Or that mobility transcends the private vehicle to more efficient combinations of means of transport, etc.

Two of these innovations for which Accenture is firmly committed can already be seen at its Innovation Center in Barcelona, ​​chaired by Pepper, a friendly robot who welcomes visitors. They are an example of blockchain, a database system for use by third parties without the risk of being modified, or a supply change, to reduce unproductive times. The consultancy firm, which operates in Spain since 1965, offering strategy, digital, technology and operations services, has more than 30 Solution Centers from which specialized knowledge, proven processes and technology are provided to clients around the world.

"Innovation, if we do not involve our employees, does not help." Nacho del Barrio, Head of Open Innovation at Accenture.

And one more step: "Innovation, if we do not involve our employees, is useless!". For Nacho del Barrio, Head of Open Innovation at Accenture, it is essential to integrate all the strategies of the company among all its employees, it is essential to involve workers in the innovation cycle. And, in turn, integrate them with the client. "

But what happens if we innovate and fail? "The important thing is not success or failure, it's the time it takes to recover from failure and how quickly you return to innovate." Something that Pau Garcia-Milà, Communicator and Entrepreneur, knows very well, Innovator of the year by MIT, because he has lived, from a very young age, the process of creation and consolidation, with its ups and downs, of a startup.

"You can create a company in 40 minutes. You just need a passion And if you fail, the important thing is that you get up in time. " Pau Garcia-Milà, Innovator of the year by MIT.

"We can create a company in 40 minutes," says Pau. And so he demonstrates to those present, starting only with a question that asks: "What is your passion?". With the help of his team of five people, connected by Skype, the exercise ends with an Airbnb-style sailing boat rental company, with logo, Web page and even estimates of web visits, with an investment of only € 100. "In a day we could know if we are on the right track, in a week, if it is a good idea. In the end, it is clear: "we must always follow the passion. Motivation is a matter of a moment; passion is forever. "

Accenture, which billed 1,083 million euros in the last fiscal year (9% more than the previous year), works in Spain with more than 80% of the IBEX35 companies and 70 of the 100 largest companies in the country. Globally, it collaborates with more than 75% of Fortune Global 500 companies. Innovation is, for a time now, one of its fundamental pillars, among others, through the Open Innovation program, with which they identify technology partners more appropriate to offer innovative solutions to companies. Currently they work together with more than 500 startups in Spain and more than 30,000 globally.

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