Paul Adams from EverEdge IP says there are 4 types of IP:
Tim Bennett from NZX talked at #TIW2013 about the process of listing on the NZX. He re-enforced that NZ companies need to list rather than sell to keep the intellectual property and assets here in NZ.
Prerequisites to listing are:
The last few days of Technology Innovation Week have certain been a showcase of some of New Zealand’s most innovative companies and entrepreneurial brains - we have it in spades! I’ve made some fantastic new connections and learned a lot about what really makes - and works in - innovative organisations.
The last few days have also re-enforced my belief that when considering needs and opportunities we need to adopt the ‘show me, don’t tell me’ approach - both to understanding the problem but also demonstrating solutions and ideas. Always focusing on being customer centric and tied up with being product centric.
With so many different prototyping tools and aids there really is no excuse to put up dull swim-lane process maps or war & peace requirements documentation (they have their place but it should be by exception rather than being the norm).
Most recently I have been working on a project aiming to increase voluntary compliance with biosecurity regulation for non-english speakers coming to New Zealand. Whilst we have used interpreters to gather input and feedback I would have to say its probably been our least effective engagement tool. Prototypes and mock-up (even basic cardboard ones) have been far more effective in understanding the view of the customer as well as presenting ideas and prototypes back to travelers.
So I challenge you to adopt this as your mantra too - Show me, don’t tell me.
Paul Sinclair from the Maven group talked about getting the culture of the organisation right to enable innovation. Some companies embed innovation then others and Paul shared some tips about building a culture of innovation. Innovation is counter-intuitive and messy topic and the culture often reflects this messiness. It more than astroturf, whiteboard paint and pretty pictures on the walls. Latent innovation resides in most organisations, the key is to create a culture which unleashes it.
People don’t buy into what you do but rather why you do it - innovative companies get that concept. Organisations need to understand their ‘why’, embed it into the organisation and do everything in line with their why.
Vaughan Rowsell of Vend talked about getting the culture right and knowing how Vend wins/succeeds. A large chunk of Vend’s growth comes from referrals and it’s their culture and customer focus which leads to that. Vaughan talked about how their core values directly relate to bottom-line results. A great no holds bared discussion about what makes the Vend culture successful and let’s them do “awesome shit”.
Mat Bolland from 2Degrees talked about the dog who caught the car. Mat talked about getting capital and then getting customers - a challenge more organisations face at one stage or another. Focusing on culture and stuff is not soft and fluffy - it’s critical to 2Degrees growth. It’s taken 2Degrees 9 years to become an overnight success - lots of hard work and tenacity. If you don’t build a culture then you get a culture - culture exists no matter what so organisations should focus on getting it right. Culture needs to be simple and authentic. 2Degrees runs a lean operation - not slides or segways - but ensures their culture fit that operating model.
Interesting agenda for the day - focused on product refinement, high growth issues, offshoring and partnering. Many NZ companies struggle with this part of the lifecycle. We heard this morning that 90% of effort around a product is around commercialising it.
Interesting to hear a bit more about Callaghan Innovation - who they are, what they are doing and how they can help the hi-tech industry in NZ. They seem to have a strong focus on connecting NZ companies with the right people overseas which is great - we are too small to re-invent things. There was also some good commentary about connecting industry with the young up and coming innovators in NZ to pave the way for the NZ Inc. future.
Tim Prestero from Design That Matters (DTM) talked about designing for actual use. Understand the customer and how they will use your product is key to success. Appearances and context of design impacts success - understand who you are working for. DTM makes designs that are hard to use wrong. Tim talked about how they prototyped and developed the Firefly product from DTM - fantastic case study! Incredible for a small company. He talked about how they run a ‘beautiful baby’ contest early on to help most people understand that their baby/idea isn’t quite as pretty as it perhaps seemed.
Grant Ryan from YikeBike shared some insights into how they do rapid prototyping. He talked about how uou can ask people all you like but until they get to interact with the real thing you won’t know what the product needs to look/feel/behave like - get something into the users hands as quickly as possible. Grant gave us a good walk through the history of the products he has been involved with - interesting and diverse range of ideas and products.