Change Ahead: How Research and Design are Transforming Business Strategy

Change Ahead: How Research and Design are Transforming Business Strategy

by Carola Verschoor

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9789063693985
Publisher: BIS Publishers
Publication date: 01/05/2016
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 7.50(w) x 9.50(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Carola Verschoor is the founder of GROH! (www.groh-innovation.com)
She is an innovator, growth agent, brand builder, creative doer, marketing strategist and foodie. Her natural habitat is where innovation, marketing and design intersect.

Carola loves challenges and believes that growth is achieved through a healthy mix of creativity, daring to believe in new possibilities, business-sense and a passion for making things work. In her practice at GROH! she supports clients in getting through the ‘Grrrr’’’’ of change and into the ‘Ooohhh!’ of suprising, creative results to business problems.

Carola has worked for over 20 years for and with some of the world’s largest branded goods companies, including: Kraft Foods, The Coca-Cola Company, Danone, Ahold, Spadel, Sara Lee, FrieslandCampina, DSM, Philips and KPN among others. She resides in The Netherlands with her husband and children.

Read an Excerpt

Strategy in motion

Strategy used to be something business professionals could build in a vacuum, buy from consultants or communicate top-down. That paradigm has been replaced by one in which strategy is collaborative, dynamic, fluid and ongoing. Strategy gets set in motion as it sails through the turbulent waters of change. It is no longer enough to manage strategic processes. Businesses must integrate their skills adaptively and flexibly to choreograph strategic efforts which will allow them to thrive in a context of chaos, where change is the norm.

Business Sailors

I’ve been in the business of innovation for over two decades, and having found my way through those uncertain, muddy waters of business renewal I know one thing for sure: it’s the attitude that makes the difference. Not just the tools, nor the size of the project, nor the level of budget. Innovation requires an attitude of curiosity to mix what we know, what we question and what is still to come, to fill the ‘space’ that lies ahead with new forms and relevant meaning; to do so assertively and with determination, from a shared vision that develops and takes shape throughout the journey, invitingly inspiring others to join in. Much like seafarers who navigate into new dimensions: enjoying the sense of freedom, the sound of the waves and the feeling of wind through our hair. The sailing team opens the road, enables discovery, facilitates the journey into the unknown and bridges the distance to new shores as they are transformed by the experience. In the world of business a new breed is emerging. This breed of innovators dares to re-search and re-design what is. They look at the world of possibilities with open minds, dare to search for opportunities and then search some more beyond the constraints of what is known. They integrate, blend, mix, streamline. They interpret and combine and re-create and envision. They guide us together forward in a progressive understanding and collaborative meaning-making which is beyond the obvious, beyond the rational and beyond the known and into the realm of our own, new possibilities and untapped potential.

Ongoing Transformation

As long as we’re alive we are transforming. This ongoing transformation is proof of alive- ness. When change stops, we are dead. This is the very basis of evolution. Evolution of business is no exception. Given the degree of complexity and change that surrounds us today, the analogy of our oceans and seas feels appropriate. The Earth’s oceans are the origin of life and the realm of continuous change in tides, in waves, in winds, in depth and in the life forms that inhabit it. In business, the strength of these natural forces of change is more felt than ever. Waves of technology, winds of societal change, cycles of economic instability, all make business more difficult than ever before to navigate. So we must learn to navigate. Staying on the shore is not an option. In order to create meaningful and lasting value, businesses need to embrace the change and the complexity around us. They are an inextricable part of it. There is no point in battling with it, taming it or framing it. Change is ongoing with the chaos and beauty that characterize it, just like the ocean.

Crisis of faith

The business world and large brands are going through a crisis of faith. This crisis is brought about by the users. They are no longer blindly following brands and businesses as a cult. This creates all kinds of ripples, waves and whirlwinds, which in turn affect business. To maintain its following, -and by extension its profits- business needs to create meaning. This entails gaining an understanding of what is meaningful and being successful in creating meaningful propositions. It implies that businesses journey into the context -into the full territory- and understand it first hand, in order to flexibly, adaptively, and gradually renew themselves to stay in touch with their users, who are at the core of their business’ aliveness and livelihood.

Table of Contents

1. STRATEGY IN MOTION
Strategy in motion
Business Sailors
Ongoing Transformation
Crisis of faith
The map is not the territory
Integrative thinking
Meaningfulness
Shifting tides
Journeys of discovery
Research, design, and strategy
Closing the gap with the context
Why re-design research?
Why re-search design?
Creative Insight
Emerging Understanding and Emerging Practices
Sailing together into new horizons
Navigating through this book

2. REDESIGNING RESEARCH
On Research
Navigating by the stars
More than one reference, more than one sailor
An ocean of non-linearity
Sensemaking
Navigating through change
Knowledge does not equal understanding
The quest for questions
Waves of knowing
Redesigning Research
Human-centred, responsive research
Theory versus practice
Explorative, generative, evaluative
Outcome-driven research
The roles of research for strategy-making
Friction versus Traction
Scenario planning and creative exploration
Get lost
Research redesigned

3. RESEARCHING DESIGN
On Design
Design in business
Steering in ever-changing conditions
Adaptive Design
The art of not-knowing
The Double Diamond of Design
Researching Design
Design emergence
Transformative Journeys
Creating waves, affecting the context
Design sub-modalities
Design Thinking
Service Design
Co-design
Transition Design
Joining hands, minds, and hearts
Oceans of opportunity
Design Revisited

4. Setting Sail
What Sailing has to do with strategy
It is the journey that counts
The what, why, and how of creative insight
Strategy as choreography
Setting S.A.I.L.
Cycles of strategic understanding
Generating options
The art of sailing
Learning the ropes
Sailing guidelines
Principles for Sensing
From Sensing to Analyzing
Principles for Analyzing
From Analyzing to Inventing
Principles for Inventing
From Inventing to Learning
Principles for Learning
From Learning to Sensing
Iterating the sailing cycle
Companies setting S.A.I.L.
The S.A.I.L. journey is transformative
Pull of adventure, Swirl of Discovery, and Inspiration of new shores

5. EMERGING PRACTICES
Dialogues in the real world
The dialogues
Words and images
Yin-Yang Research and Design
Connection, curiosity and exploration
Collaboration and complementarity
Shared Purpose
Interrelated and interconnected
Serendipitous Journeys
Growing integration
Collective thinking and rich ideas
Architecting and Constructing
Circular integration
Continuous learning and applying
Harmony on scale
Broad, connected networks
Dynamic engagement
Manifesting the future
Shorter iterative cycles
Reconnecting with our humanity
One dynamic evolving system
Smarter together
Intertwining flow
Continuous Beta-mode
Emerging practices

6. CONVERGING TOWARDS COLLABORATION
Purposeful convergence
The dialogues
Interconnecting disciplines
Cyclical and fluid processes
Exploring strange new worlds
A joining of hands
Creating all kinds of value
A project-based future
Business like music
Cycles of continuous learning
Circular regeneration
Setting horizons
A business designer hybrid
Collaborative future
People as connectors
Cyclicality and transparency
Transversal Lens
A working ecosystem of people
Working together
A new common language
Conscious collaboration
Interconnected and interdependent
Aligned with life
Emerging understanding

7. THE NEXT FRONTIER
Continuous waves of renewal
T-shaped professionals
Enabling Change
Paradigm shift
Modelling attitude is not applying models
Change agents
Attitude for growth
LeaderShip

8. CHANGE AHEAD
Value creation
Facilitators of change
Wandering and wondering
Alive organizations
Collaborative learning
Humanizing our efforts
Everything isªa project
Fluidity

Endnotes
Photography credits

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