In thousands of innovative companies all over the world, an increasingly-popular job title is being added to organisational charts: the innovation manager. The job descriptions for this role are often diverse and they are customised to fit the needs of specific companies.
In our blog series, The Twelve Hats Of An Innovation Manager, we are taking a deep dive into all the different job functions that an innovation manager must complete. In this post, we look at why the innovation manager also contributes to your company’s innovation strategy.
As an innovation strategist, the innovation manager performs several duties:
- Collects ideas;
- Orients the company on a strategic level;
- Analyses opportunities;
- Assesses risks, strengths, and weaknesses; and,
- Considers the future and points the company in the right direction.
To accomplish these tasks, the innovation manager works closely with departments and the leadership team to derive the company’s overall innovation strategy. This important component lays out the mission, vision, and goals of the company and describes how innovation will make an impact on them.
On the journey to develop a useful innovation strategy for the company, the innovation manager engages the business in new and meaningful ways. Wearing their strategist cap, the innovation manager does the following:
- Challenges the organisation to engage with customers about their problems;
- Brings forward new tools to capture and estimate business value, such as roadmaps; and,
- Encourages a lean development approach, where possible. This includes rapid prototyping, partnerships with exciting new vendors, and embracing changes in an agile manner.
In a smart and diligent manner, the innovation strategist combines the findings from all these sources and draws connections between the company’s vision for innovation and the resulting impacts from innovation.
…Can you think of other ways that an innovation manager is an important strategist for an organisation? We would love it if you shared your thoughts with us in the comments and continued the conversation about the many different roles of the innovation manager! You can also follow our blog for more content about innovation.