Définition de l’Open Innovation selon Henry CHESBROUGH

L’innovation ouverte (ou innovation distribuée) est le terme promu par Henry Chesbrough (professeur et directeur du Center for Open Innovation à Berkeley), en 2003.  Celui-ci le définit ainsi: « The use of purposive inflows and outflows of knowledge to accelerate internal innovation, and expand the markets for external use of innovation, respectively. Open innovation is a paradigm[1] that assumes that firms can and should use external ideas as well as internal ideas, and internal and external paths to market, as they look to advance their technology”[2].

C’est donc un mode d’innovation basé sur le partage, la coopération entre entreprises, dans un climat d’échanges, d’ouverture et de confiance :

Nous pouvons donc opposer « innovation fermée » à « innovation ouverte », comme deux notions qui illustrent l’évolution, et le changement de paradigme apporté par le concept « d’Open Innovation ».

Les deux schémas suivants, dit de « l’entonnoir troué »,  de Henry Chesbrough,  illustrent le mode innovation fermée versus innovation ouverte, pour permettre leur comparaison respective :

closed versus open inno model

Le haut du schéma représente l’innovation fermée : Les projets de recherche ne sont menés qu’à partir de la connaissance et la technologie interne. Ces projets évoluent vers le marché, certains étant sélectionnés pour aboutir, d’autres étant stoppés, selon un processus linéaire fixe. Cette forme d’innovation est qualifiée de fermée, dans la mesure où il n’y a qu’un chemin possible, pour l’entrée et la sortie du savoir-faire de l’entreprise.

Nous pouvons citer le cas des laboratoires AT&T Bell qui fonctionne selon ce mode. Cela leur a permis de belles découvertes, mais aussi une difficulté reconnue à s’adapter aux marchés des télécoms.

Le deuxième schéma représente l’innovation ouverte. Dans ce mode, les projets peuvent être lancés à partir de technologies internes, ou externes. Les accès de la technologie peuvent se produire à différentes étapes du processus.

De plus, ces projets peuvent atteindre le marché de différents façons : Licences, spin-offs, ou à partir du marketing interne de l’entreprise.

[1] Thomas Kuhn, dans « La structure des révolutions scientifiques », définit un paradigme comme « un systèmes de croyances et de postulats qui créent une vision du monde intégrée, si convaincant qu’on la confond avec la réalité ».

[2] « Open Innovation: The New Imperative for Creating and Profiting from Technology », Henry Chesbrough, Harvard Business School Press, 2003.

Cyriaque BENOIST

Incubateurs dans les grands groupes: Attention à l’effet de mode, par Romaric SERVAJEAN-HILST et Olivier DUVERDIER

Romaric Servajean-Hilst (CRG de Polytechnique) a publié un point de vue dans Le Monde du 20 janvier, avec Olivier Duverdier (Directeur général d’Ecosys Group et Président du Comité « Open Innovation » du Medef), sur le thème : « Incubateurs dans les grands groupes : attention à l’effet de mode ».

Ils y présentent l’importance du développement des incubateurs de start-ups au sein des grands groupes en France, et l’intérêt qu’ils peuvent représenter pour les start-ups comme pour les grands groupes.

Dans ce billet cosigné, l’un et l’autre soulignent combien l’implication de tous les niveaux hiérarchiques de la grande entreprise est nécessaire pour aller au-delà de l’effet de mode de ce nouveau mode de coopération.

Cyriaque BENOIST

Organisation sans hiérarchie stricte

Imagine a huge, complex organization where no one is in charge.

Can’t see it? Well, look in the mirror. One example is that thing sitting on top of yourshoulders called your head.

The human brain has 85 billion nerve cells, with many thousands of interconnected processes happening simultaneously. Or think about our massively Networked Economy. Highly complex systems like these have structures and coordinating mechanisms, but are also highly adaptive and self-managing. Nobody is in charge.

Of course, most organizations today are exactly the opposite. They run on century-old hierarchical management models designed for the transition from an agrarian to an industrial economy, where centralization, conformity and obedience were critically important. It should be no surprise that these models are poorly suited in a world where complexity is epidemic, and innovation accelerates exponentially.

But things are changing rapidly. For example, more and more organizations are making the move to Holacracy; a new distributed governance process with no management hierarchy. Instead power is held by defined roles such as facilitation, not by people. Pioneers like Zappos are learning that, whilenot a panacea, Holacracy can be an effective alternative to rigid, hierarchical management structures. This is just one example coming from bold management innovators at the leading edge of the Future of Work.

Archetypes of self-managing structures are emerging

While researching his new book Reinventing Organizations, author Frederic Laloux discovered that management innovators in different industries and locations, with workforces ranging in size from hundred to tens of thousands, and who did not even know of each other’s existence, were nevertheless following strikingly similar paths.

For example, here are three distinct organizational structures that emerged consistently:

Parallel teams – when work can be organized into autonomous streams with little need to coordinate with each other.

Web of individual contracting – where roles and commitments are set through one-to-one conversations between colleagues who work together.

Nested teams – for work requiring specialist teams that work together toward larger whole.

Which structures emerge depends upon the type of activity, as well as the length and depth of an organization’s value chain.

From bureaucracy to values and shared purpose

Self-managed organizations still need clear paths for getting things done. The big idea is that this work will become self-managed according to values and shared purpose instead of preset rules and hierarchy. Here are some examples:

Institutionalize advice in decision making

We’re accustomed to two methods of deciding things; tops-down authoritarian and egalitarian consensus-style. But that’s because we don’t trust individual employees to make decisions on their own. But what if we could guarantee that that individual had the full benefit of the organization’s knowledge and experience before making the decision? The “advice process” is a recent development that requires only that the decision maker (who is usually the person who identified the issue in the first place) first consult experts on the issue at hand and then all those who will be significantly affected by the outcome. After that, the decision is theirs to make and cannot be over-ruled. You may think this could never work in large companies, but the advice process is in practice at AES, a global company with 40,000 employees.

Get rid of budgets

Instead of asking “Do I have enough budget?”, the Norwegian energy company Statoil asks:

  • “Is this really necessary?”
  • “What’s good enough?
  • “How is this creating value?”
  • “Is this within my execution framework?”

There are no annual budgets at Statoil. Instead the “bank” is open year-round and managed through a process of dynamic forecasting. Spending decisions are made as late as possible, and at the lowest sensible level in the organization. Cost management KPI’s are either absolute, relative to competitors, or directional depending on what works best in each situation. The results? Less gamesmanship and hidden political agendas, timely discussions about important issues, and a pervasive value-oriented, cost conscious mindset.

Set your own salary – Morning Star is a self-managed company with no centrally defined roles, titles, or career paths. Therefore their compensation system is designed to reflect the actual value employees deliver to the company. Every year employees, in an open and transparent process, review themselves and their colleagues. Then they write a one-page letter explaining how much they deserve next year, and why. A compensation committee reads them all and makes recommendations back to each individual, which everyone is then free to disregard. But like the review process, every employee’s decision about their own compensation is completely transparent within the company. This is powerful motivation to act responsibly, and it seems to be working. Today, Morning Star is a $700 million business with double-digit growth over twenty years, while their industry’s annual growth rate is about 1%.

If all this sounds blasphemous, even perilous, it’s because it is. Exercising leadership muscles of influence, persuasion, trust, respect and community-building is far more difficult than command and control. And for many organizations, this will require a major shift in culture and mindset.

Get going today

Fortunately there is no shortage of ideas on how to get started. Management innovators are all around us. Gatherings like the MIX Mashup and competitions such as the Unlimited Human Potential MPrize, unearth new management practices and technologies every day.

What’s clear is that change needs to happen – and quickly. Employees are deeply unsatisfied with the status quo, which makes for unhappy – and unproductive – workplaces. Radically simplifying our current management structures can bring the Future of Work one step closer

Dans certains cas, comment passer d’un mode « Command » à un mode plus ouvert, pour favoriser l’émergence de l’innovation au sein de l’entreprise.

Cyriaque BENOIST

Innovation et management chez GORE & ASSOCIATES

Un article de Kevin O’Brien, dans Huffington Post.com, qui explique comment le souci de l’innovation se décline dans des pratiques managériales originales chez GORE & ASSOCIATES (la société qui a créée le GORETEX):

I was fortunate early in my career to spend seven years working for a very progressive company named W.L. Gore & Associates. Gore is most famous for creating GORE-TEX fabric but is perhaps less known for its unique lattice structure. Since its founding in 1958, Gore has used the lattice as a tool to enhance innovation.

The stated focus of this privately held firm is to create a continuous stream of innovative products based on fluoropolymer materials. As a former associate, I can attest that the lattice clearly helps this process. When an associate (Gore’s term for an employee) comes up with an idea for a new product, they are encouraged to shop it around to see if it gains traction with other associates. The lattice is excellent at the letting the enterprise decide which ideas ultimately get pursued.

Since setting up my consulting practice, I’ve found that this is not the case in most organizations. If fact, most organizations aren’t set up to aggregate and leverage collective intelligence. This is a shame, because the times we live in clearly call for innovative solutions to problems we face.

This has led me to believe that if we want to innovate, we need to be comfortable allowing the organization to use its collective intelligence in making decisions. How do we do this? One method I’ve come across that tends work very well is called Open Space Technology, or OST for short. It’s a convening process that invites individuals and collective leadership to an event to deeply connect and achieve high performance at work and in their lives.

What really excites me is that with OST you get to experience what it’s like to work at Gore. You have freedom to learn and contribute any way you like. The only limit you have is the one you place on yourself. You do need others to support you, but that is how it works in the real world anyway.

Inside Gore, fellow associates are a community of investors. They are free to invest their time in things that are of interest to them that also have business value. If your project is in need of money to buy materials or equipment, you can purchase whatever you like as long as you are not risking the financial health or reputation of the enterprise. If you do desire to take large risks, you will need to involve other people, as Gore believes that all associates are in the same boat. You don’t want to be the one that sinks the ship.

At some point in the process of promoting your idea, you may look to get leadership buy-in. Leaders, who always have a broad network of connections, can help you sell your idea. You might be saying to yourself, « This sounds like a hierarchy. » It is, sort of. At Gore, instead of bosses, leaders are people you want to follow. In a normal organization the boss is appointed from above. And you pretty much have to do what the boss wants. At Gore leaders are chosen with help of associates, and there is no requirement that you follow a so-called leader. The leader needs to earn and keep your followership. At an Open Space event you also have the opportunity to earn followership and receive input and get candid feedback on the relative value of ideas. In fact, followers can quickly become the team that contributes and executes a project.

Open Space Technology uses something called the « law of two feet. » If you are not learning or contributing something in a discussion, you are free (in fact, you are strongly urged) to use your two feet and go somewhere else where you can be more useful. This simple practice is also a law at all meetings in Gore. You’re responsible for where you invest your time. The organization expects you to make a contribution, but not on something that doesn’t make sense or energize you.

To open the space for innovation in your organization, you’ll need to adopt three practices. The first is to open dialogue around new ideas. People need to feel free to bring their own ideas to the table. Let people call their own meetings and invite people to use the law of two feet. The second and somewhat harder practice is that of open commitment. Let people decide what projects they want to contribute to. Make clear that once a commitment is made, the expectation is that it will be fulfilled, but also that individuals are accountable for being energized by their commitments. The third and most difficult practice for a traditional organization is open contribution ranking. Let teams evaluate the relative contribution of their leaders and their peers. Make it a goal that the ones who are contributing the most to the enterprise are the ones being compensated the most.

In an environment where command and control is the dominant paradigm, adopting the practices described above is not for the faint of heart. But is necessary if your organization wants to obtain the benefits of innovation and collective intelligence. I recommend you start with small experiments. These small steps over time, coupled with owning the desire for effective new ways of doing work, will enable your organization to evolve and, just possibly, transform.

En résumé:

-Laisser les colaborateurs prendre des initiatives innovantes;

-Les autoriser à quitter une réunion, s’il n’y a pas d’interêt

-Les rendre responsables de leurs initiatives

Cyriaque BENOIST

Les freins à l’Open Innovation en France

Pour diffuser la culture « open Innovation », le Medef vient de publier un « baromètre » destiné à identifier les freins à son développement en France. L’idée de « l’open innovation» est de « décloisonner l’entreprise » afin d’alimenter la veille, d’innover sur les produits et services, voire de travailler sur des innovations radicales en mettant autour de la table, donneurs d’ordres, PME, clients, fournisseurs, universitaires, voire concurrents. Mais 58 % des entreprises interrogées redoutent le vol ou le détournement de leur propriété intellectuelle.

C’est une méthodologie qui nous vient des pays anglo-saxons et que Medef entend promouvoir auprès des PME : l’open innovation. Adoptée par des grands groupes en France, ce système d’innovation, assez courant dans l’économie numérique, repose non plus seulement sur les laboratoires de recherche classique, les clusters situés dans l’environnement immédiat de l’entreprise ou les acteurs de l’innovation académique, mais inclut également des start-ups et des intervenants aux compétences beaucoup plus éloignés du cœur de métier de l’entreprise comme des designers voire des sociologues et des historiens. Pour diffuser la culture « open Innovation », le Medef vient de publier un « baromètre » destiné à identifier les freins à son développement en France et lance un cycle de travail en 2015 pour ses adhérents.

Selon le baromètre mis en place par le Medef, une entreprise industrielle sur quatre en France seulement, se sent mature sur ce type de sujet. Et surtout les grands groupes. « Dommage », pense Olivier Duverdier le promoteur du projet au Medef, fondateur d’Ecosys Group qui y voit une opportunité notamment pour les PME de collaborer avec les grands groupes sur un mode différent de la relation client-fournisseur.

La peur du vol ou du détournement de propriété intellectuelle

L’idée de « l’open innovation» est de « décloisonner l’entreprise » afin d’alimenter la veille, d’innover sur les produits et services, voire de travailler sur des innovations radicales en mettant autour de la table, donneurs d’ordres, PME, clients, fournisseurs, universitaires, voire concurrents. «L’ancêtre de la méthode l’open innovation en France, ce sont les pôles de compétitivité », explique Olivier Duverdier.

Cet entrepreneur, ancien banquier d’affaires est à l’origine du programme d’open innovation « Cleantech Open » qui rassemble 21 pôles de compétitivité français, des accélérateurs de start-ups, des fonds d’investissement, des industriels et différents experts technologiques ou spécialisés en propriété intellectuelle. L’objectif est de développer des projets portés par des start-ups innovantes.

Mais deux craintes principales freinent le développement de l’open-innovation en France. Selon le baromètre du Medef,

58 % des entreprises interrogées redoutent le vol ou le détournement de leur propriété intellectuelle et 38 % craignent de perdre le contrôle du processus d’innovation.

« N’espérez pas innover avec un grand groupe sur votre cœur d’activité », convient Olivier Duverdier qui conseille aux PME de travailler plutôt sur leurs marchés futurs pour éviter de se faire « cannibaliser » leurs technologies ou leur propriété intellectuelle.

Cyriaque BENOIST

Cyriaque BENOIST: « Innover pour performer ! »

Ce site porte sur les bénéfices de la mise en place d’une démarche « d’open innovation », dans le domaine des achats.

En effet, si savoir négocier reste déterminant pour obtenir de bons prix de la part des fournisseurs, le fait de savoir travailler en amont, dans la créativité, autorise des gains (mutuels) beaucoup plus importants.

Alors comment mettre en place une approche « d’open innovation » dans l’activité Achats de l’entreprise ?

Quelles sont les bonnes pratiques ? Les « success story » les plus pertinentes ?

Nous aborderons ces différents sujets tout au long de ce blog.

Alors, bonne lecture, et merci d’avance pour vos contributions, remarques, commentaires, réactions

A bientôt