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The change of any organisational process can be intimidating. Knowing how to go about building the desired level of understanding as well as implementing a new way of working often leaves many overwhelmed. Where do you start? Whom do you involve? How do you see it through to the end? The key is to start small by creating a focused team who can build the required skills and competencies, and practice the new initiative.

Since January 2014, The Moon on a Stick has worked closely with a multinational consumer goods company, supporting their journey in establishing and implementing a Front End Innovation (FEI) process. Championed by one of the client’s Directors, a central Innovation team was created to initially learn and practice the process. The team, made up from representatives from six different areas of the business, consisted of twelve people, a mixture of both Managers and Process Leaders.

Having been set a clear goal by the Director, the team undertook a week of intensive training, which introduced The Moon on a Stick’s FEI process, with the tools and techniques needed to explore the outlined objectives. Working within a multifunctional environment allowed the team to make decisions and create outcomes, which were practical for all aspects of the business.

Following the formal training, the team made time to meet every Friday for two-hours to continue practicing and exploring the opportunities within the front end of their innovation process. The team agreed that the sessions would take place when a minimum of three people were present from the group, to maintain project momentum. Light consequences were also implemented if a team member missed three consecutive sessions. A Google+ Page was created to encourage the team to share relevant articles and examples they found throughout the week, and to keep the discussions from their Friday sessions alive. By developing a multifunctional team, each member is also championing the new tools and ways-of-working within their individual business area.

The team have been allocated time within their monthly Product Development Meetings to present the outcomes they created. Top management provide the team with feedback and define what their focus should be for the up-and-coming weeks, i.e. if they should continue to develop the Opportunity Spaces identified or start to explore a new direction.

This approach has proven very successful in embedding a new way of thinking and practicing Front End Innovation within an organisation.


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