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Igniting innovation in a complex manufacturing company

IdeaKeg guides creative problem solving


A $1-billion private medical device manufacturing company had grown principally through the worldwide sale of a medical device soon to lose patent protection. So the founding CEO needed a pipeline of new product ideas to develop in order to broaden the company’s portfolio of profitable products. He  empowered a young engineer to create a New Product Development function.  The NPD leader sought a framework that was: practically oriented, leveraged internal resources, and scalable.

To create a new process for NPD, the engineer adopted IdeaKeg, a unique subscription service for innovation/NPD teams.

IdeaKeg was a “three-dimensional magazine” of cultural and technological trends we curated, eight editions each year.

The subscription included a proprietary guide called FuseTrail, which sets out step-by-step how an NPD manager can run an ideation cycle relying on internal resources.

People learn-by-doing an idea generation process called “kinaesthetic mashups” which enables them to come up with better, more novel ideas faster.

Within about 12 months, all nine units of the business were using the new NPD service powered by FuseTrail using IdeaKeg. Fast-forward a further 18 months, and ideas generated using this framework were not only in the market but crossing the $10M revenue mark. Friction between the marketing and engineering teams reduced, as people became better at “working across the aisles”.

We ran a culture scanning function our interdisciplinary team to underpin IdeaKeg. FuseTrail applied our in-depth experiences of corporate innovation and our practical  knowledge of the Creative Problem Solving framework developed over decades by Osborn, Parnes and Basadur. In our experience, relying confidently on your company’s own talent makes NPD more affordable, which helps reduce innovation risk. Furthermore, when employers compete for talent, offering your staff creative opportunities helps engage people in purposeful work.

The TEN difference: Learning-by-doing embeds profitable new creative behaviours in an engineering-led company.


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