Implementing Innovation

11 Jul 2017
Implementing Innovation

Innovation is one thing; implementation is something else altogether. With all this talk about disruption and how it is recreating entire industries, it is up to individual businesses within disrupted sectors to figure out what they need to do to remain relevant and profitable.


While business owners might be aware of the need to innovate, putting those innovations to work for them is a challenge all its own. In an interview with The Business Times, industry leaders say that coping with, or even leveraging disruption is a matter of timing and being prepared.


Upper management needs to keep a close eye on industry developments, make forecasts based on these trends, and prepare accordingly. They must act swiftly and decisively, and be willing to break away from business models that might have served them well in the past, but would only stunt their growth today. Leaders must likewise be aware of the negative impact that disruption might have on their business, and the consequences of not being able to adapt.


This is exactly how the owners of companies such as a home video retailer, a photography studio and a traditional Chinese medicine manufacturer featured by The Straits Times were able to flourish in the face of disruption. These companies offer proof that businesses can not only survive but succeed, both by reinventing themselves and embracing the very changes that spurred their transformation.


But the efforts of individual companies are also affected, for good or ill by the need for innovation on an industrial scale. Air travel and shipping are two such industries—the former has yet to entirely abandon traditional seat-distribution methods, and to adjust to the advent of the fly-all-you-can business model.  The latter has to deal with the rise of mega alliances and radical changes in the supply chain.


Digitalisation and technology as a whole continue to drive the industry-wide changes in these and other fields. Those in key positions must be able to identify the opportunities that technological changes provide, and find ways to adapt while remaining true to the identity and core values of their organisations.


The Transformative Strategy programme at SMU Academy is designed specifically for decision-makers faced with the task of seeing their businesses through the process of innovation in response to industry disruption. The programme is ideal for communications managers, as well as those seeking a better grasp of the strategies necessary for the improvement of their company’s corporate communications.


Transformative Strategy focuses on strategy’s role in decision-making, as well as taking concrete steps toward implementation. Assistant Professor of Strategy and Della Suantio Fellow, Dr Geng Xuesong, is the programme instructor. Having worked as a senior strategy analyst at a state-owned company in China, and as a consultant at several other companies, he continues to study organisational behaviour in Asia and the United States.


As a credit-bearing programme, Transformative Strategy leads to a Master of Science degree in Communication Management, as well as to a Graduate Certificate in Management Communication in Strategy upon completion of complementary courses. Find out how SMU Academy’s programmes can help you implement the innovations your company needs to stay ahead in your industry today.