I was appalled to read a summary of a recent report that nearly 50 metropolitan regions in the USA- or more than one in seven- are unlikely to bring back their regions to job levels lost in the recession until after 2020. Yes you read it right- 2020, nearly nine further years, well beyond this Presidents further term of office, if he gets re-elected.
The report commissioned by the U.S Conference of Mayors are equally predicting 363 metropolitan areas would not generate enough jobs to get back to pre-recession peaks until 2014, based on current world economics. When you add in that metropolitan regions account for 86 per cent of all jobs you realize how stark this is. So we are entering that twilight zone for millions that have a number of lost years ahead of them to face a difficult, uncertain future.
The issue is not just the economic job loss but the types of job lost are just not easily going to be replaced. Many are simply gone, moved somewhere else in the world or just vanished forever. The level of re-skilling that needs to take place to move old-line factory jobs into technology related, advanced manufacturing for protecting added value areas or service sectors is simply massive.
Can innovation as is often suggested simply take up the slack? I think it is uinlikely. We need to think different, we need to think radically and innovation plays its delivery part in this.
Across the pond in the UK and much of Europe I suspect it is no different
I believe we are arriving at the point of real value by organizing dedicated innovation scientists and engineers into a specialised innovation unit. Innovation has emerged into part science, part art and design, and plenty of engineering (social and process). Today to successfully manage innovation is getting increasingly challenging and placing considerable strain on the present design and structures of organizations. A dedicated unit or group that draws from a range of disciplines and combines these into a new organization unit has significant value to be at the forefront of designing the organizational change needed for innovation to be more embedded and integrated.
Let me explain why?
Absorbing the different messages coming out of Professor Henry Chesbrough’s new book has been interesting. The book “Open Services Innovation: Rethinking your business to grow and compete in a new era”, published by Jossey-Bass was just launched in January 2011.
The book can go the way of a lightning rod to bringing service innovation up in many people’s thinking both in academic research and corporate agendas. Professor Chesbrough is absolutely right, services are critical to developed countries economies and within our organizations. It is time to move service innovation up in our thinking by combining the internal capabilities within organizations and by enlisting the efforts of many others in support of their business. The challenge is to combine the customer and the supplier on the same platform for Open Services Innovation to work. It is thinking through platforms more that catches my interest and what this means in generating new, innovative business models.
Taking services into a more open approach is not so easy.
I have been looking forward to this book; it addresses one of the most important areas of innovation that we have, the service sector. In this last week I have been reading Professor Henry Chesbrough’s new book “Open Services Innovation: Rethinking your business to grow and compete in a new era”, published by Jossey-Bass, released last week on 18th January.
Services are critical to understand and focus upon, for our continued economic growth, for the ability to offer often distinct and unique competitive advantage, as well as provide much of our future employment opportunities, especially crucial in the Western economies. Services today comprise roughly 80% of economic activity in the United States, and 60% of economic activity in the top forty economies of the world (source OECD).
After reading this book a couple of times I must admit I had a set of very mixed emotions.
For better understanding of what makes up service innovation we need to fill in far too many gaps at present. I’m hopeful that the forthcoming book of Henry Chesbrough: “Open Services Innovation: Rethinking your Business to Grow and Compete in a New Era”, published by Jossey-Bass and being launching officially next week, 18th January 2011, will go some of the way to be a lightning rod to bringing this up in many people’s agenda, if it is not already!
I felt with his past books on Open Innovation and Open Business Innovation they were the catalysts for deeper thinking. He provided the stimulus to find better answers with his many reflections and case studies through his solid research work and his ‘open’ and questioning thinking to prompt community ‘reactions’. This galvanized significant innovation movements and this time hopefully, it will be to open up and manage service innovation more effectively.
I will be completing a book review on this latest open innovation thinking by Dr.Chesbrough for www.innovationmanagement.se as an early February publication and I’m certainly looking forward to reading the final edition of this book when it arrives.