4 Business Simulations for powerful experiential learning about Innovation

Article by Ken Thompson, 12 Sep 2020

We have 4 Business Simulations specifically designed to provide powerful team-based experiential learning on different aspects of Innovation. To help you position these simulations for your specific innovation interests let's first introduce a simple generic framework for Innovation which we call IDEAS.

THE "IDEAS" MODEL OF INNOVATION

Ideation

Design

Environment

Adoption

Structures

We represent the IDEAS model visually as above to make 2 important distinctions: 

  1. Ideation (or Invention), Design (or Development) and Adoption (aka Innovation Diffusion) are the main operational elements of innovation. These three "blue" elements need to be intimately linked in an on-going iterative cycle of collaborating, experimenting, reviewing, testing and refining.
  2. Environment (Leadership and Culture) and Structures/Systems (Governance, Processes and Tools) are the key management elements of innovation.The purpose of these two "green" elements is to create the conditions where the operational elements of innovation can be effective.

BUSINESS SIMULATIONS FOR INNOVATION 

Simulation 1: SPREAD for Agile Innovation,  Model Mapping: IDEAS

SPREAD allows you to simulate any kind of project which requires you to a) build something and/or or b) get a community to adopt something or both of these. We have number of Off-the-Shelf Innovation SPREADs which allow you to simulate the development/launch of different types of products and services.

Simulation 2: SPREAD for Innovation Environment/Culture, Model Mapping: IDEAS

We can also use SPREAD for Innovation Leadership where the project goal is to create a culture of innovation within the organization. In managing the SPREAD project you need to plan, select activities, manage risk, create community leadership, develop organizational readiness, develop artifacts, manage budgets, react to the unexpected and move the community up through different stages of adoption.

Simulation 3: DILEMMA for Innovation Management, Model Mapping: IDEAS

DILEMMA is a configurable business strategy simulation which can represent 6 commercial enterprises (B2C or B2B) competing for market share through their commercial acumen, strategy, execution, product marketing and market development. It runs for 4 rounds (a round can be a month or a quarter). Each round is a developing story about the market, the products and different innovation challenges resulting in 4 challenging management decisions covering different aspects of innovation leadership. Results are measured commercially and also in terms of Organizational Health and Organizational Reputation.

Simulation 4: COHORT for Innovation Leadership, Model Mapping: IDEAS

COHORT is a configurable change leadership simulation where you try to win the support of 10 important stakeholders in an organization for a major change programme you are leading. In this example the major change is “Creating a culture of innovation”. Each stakeholder has a different level of power, influence, reputation, relationship and attitude to the proposed change. You make different direct and indirect interventions with each of the stakeholders to try and win their support. As you meet with the stakeholders they also give you feedback on your plan for introducing the change which you must also address in the simulation

Spread Simulation

Want to know more about SPREAD?

More about Ken Thompson

Ken Thompson

Ken is a practitioner, author and speaker on Leadership, Collaborative Working, High Performing Teams, Change Management, Project Management and Business Acumen. His work has featured in major publications including The Guardian , Wired Magazine, The Huffington Post and The Henry Ford Magazine. Ken has also spoken at many international events including TEDx, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), Learn Tech (London) and NASA.

Ken is Managing Director of Business Simulations Ltd.

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