3m and Innovation

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Innovation is a major part of corporations today. It is what keeps them sustainable and competitive in today’s market. 3M is large corporation with global operations in several countries that sales and invents multi-products. 3M is known around the world as the innovation king. It has a strategy that many companies are trying to duplicate. It leadership is impeccable. Innovation is what runs through the firm’s blood. It lives, breath, sleep innovation. I once read an article and the author once stated: “Irrational passion is the key change agent of our economy.” (Author unknown) The central issue in this case is the loss of drive in innovation. Since the business has grown over the years it has had trouble keeping up. 3M has a proven strategy for innovation that supports innovators who want to take an idea forward. 3M has work innovation into its culture. As I mention earlier it is the bloodline of the company. The company is known for rewarding its employees such as the Innovator’s Award. Identify the constraints to the problem. The greatest constraint may be the “formal” stage itself or the lack of interest or expertise of the “champion” who may be tasked with bringing a “cooking” innovative idea to the formal stage gate process. For example, if post it notes which took 3 years to “cook” somehow were not successfully championed to 3M’s “formal” stage gate process, it may never have reached the market. Leaving would be great ideas into the hands of champions seems like a major weakness of 3M’s innovation strategy. A process dating to 1951, which allows “volunteers” to participate in technology forums may also reduce access to employee ideas as management may select individuals who are “voluntold” to participate, or others may not be allowed because their department load is heavy. In other words, the dynamics of “every employee is a skunk” may not be valid. Identify all the relevant alternatives. Alternative A. Get rid of executive...
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