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Organizing for Innovation in a Product Development Project Combining Innovative and Result Oriented Ways of Working – a Case Study

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International Journal of Project Management 27 (2009) 745–753 www.elsevier.com/locate/ijproman

Organizing for innovation in a product development project Combining innovative and result oriented ways of working – A case study Per Sundstrom 1, Annika Zika-Viktorsson * ¨
Royal Institute of Technology, KTH Integrated Product Development, School of Industrial Engineering and Management, SE-100 44 Stockholm, Sweden Received 1 July 2008; received in revised form 6 February 2009; accepted 12 February 2009

Abstract This case study investigates how leadership and management support creativity and innovation in the operative work of a product development project team. The aim of the study was to investigate factors that support the generation of new and innovative ideas as well as the efficient evaluation and implementation of ideas into a product. The aim was also to enhance the understanding of innovation when a project is characterized by pressure in terms of tight schedules, the need for progress, and a shortage of competencies. The investigated project provides an example of how innovation in a PD project benefits from pressure. The result shows how the following support a project team’s performance and enhance innovation: a clear vision – accompanied by freedom in the realization of that vision, transparency in the product architecture, enhanced communication and problem ownership. The results show also the interplay between leadership skills, individual characteristics (such as competence, attitude and motivation) and project characteristics (such as sense of urgency and a unique product). Ó 2009 Elsevier Ltd and IPMA. All rights reserved. Keywords: Innovation; Creativity; Project management; Product development

1. Introduction This paper presents a study that investigates how leadership and management support creativity and innovation in the operative work of a project team within a product development (PD)...

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