“You can’t solve a problem on the same level that it was created. You have to rise above it to the next level.” – Albert Einstein
The world rose and reached the next level of solutions with time and technology. Today, novel terminologies like ‘Open Innovation’ and ‘Crowd Sourcing‘ are spreading wide and across. I have often been asked what these terms exactly are? How are they affecting us, the businesses or the world in general? So let me take you through a dummy’s guide to open innovation and crowdsourcing.
How do I understand these complex terms?
The terms no matter how alien they sound, have a very clear purpose and definition.
Open innovation can be thought of as an ecosystem. An ecosystem where individuals and organizations get actively involved in the creation of mutually beneficial solutions. Through open innovation, decision making becomes a truly democratic process. It also induces a wider approach to problem-solving.
On the other hand in crowdsourcing an organization outsources projects to the public. It decides to tap into the knowledge of a wider crowd and solutions are sourced from the masses. A public challenge, asking for opinions, insight and suggestions on social platforms and much more. It can be linked to the user driven innovation in many ways.
Why is there a need for open innovation?
I will quote a very rightful explanation of this question by Henry Chesbrough, one of its pioneers. “With knowledge now widely distributed, companies cannot rely entirely on their own research but should acquire inventions or intellectual property from other companies when it advances the business model. Competitive advantage now often comes from leveraging the discoveries of others. An “open” approach to innovation leverages internal and external source of ideas.”
Can you quote me some real life examples?
Of course, I can. The concept might be fairly novel, but the implementation is scaling across the globe. For instance, GE built a co-create collaboration platform. It connects designers, engineers, and thinkers to share ideas with other members to discuss it together. The ideas focus on solving real world problems and creating new home appliances as products. Winning ideas are made available for monetization. Not only this, GE provides with manufacturing centers, tools and access to the collaborators to turn their ideas into reality. This project is called First Build. Besides this, there are several other successful examples of Open Innovation which you can learn from.
Talk about crowd sourcing? Multiple companies and startups are adopting this methodology for extracting solutions from the masses. For instance, The Dell Innovation Challenge has been running for 7 years now. The program encourages students to ideate together and work on big ideas that have world-changing possibilities. The contest offers a whopping $350,000 worth of prizes to winners for their ideas.
Which is better out of the two?
Both actually! Being interrelated to each other. A correct balance of both gives you a great solution. It’s their intersection that creates magic. Crowdsourcing can be a means of an innovation and innovation can be a reason for crowdsourcing.
Deeeeeeeeeeep, wasn’t it? Not anymore! So, now wouldn’t you like to be a part of a platform where innovative ideas get transformed into real world solutions? Sure you do. Axis Bank presents the “Innovation Hack” where you get a chance to be a FinTech Pro. The Hackathon gives you the freedom to ideate and develop products and solutions at the comfort of your homes and get see your product/solution being implemented in real. Explore the financial technology sector to a whole new level. So get out there and innovate my friends!