Today, digitization is providing new oppor-
tunities for manufacturing companies to cre-
ate game-changing innovations – from trans-
forming products and services, to rethinking
the structure of organizations, to changing the
nature of work itself.
On a broader scale, transformational digital
technologies are also starting to break down
the traditional boundaries between sectors, industries, and scientific disciplines. As a result,
they are helping to redefine the role that manufacturing plays in delivering life-enhancing
new ideas to multiple global markets, and in
supporting a cleaner, healthier, and more sustainable world for people to live in.
But as the Council’s latest Innovation survey in this issue reveals, digital technologies
alone are not enough. A strong innovation
culture and visionary leadership are the most
important enablers of successful innovation.
Clearly, in today’s era of fast-changing
digital displacement, original ideas are more
valuable than ever. Promoting a corporate
culture that stimulates such creative thought
is also becoming as much a leadership art as it
is a corporate organizational science.
Allowing the space and time for truly disruptive original thought -- supported, refined,
and delivered by new digital technologies -- requires an enlightened culture of free ideas and
encouragement for the people with the right
knowledge, the improvisational talent, and the
intellectual fortitude to make them happen.
That’s the real challenge for today’s
manufacturing leaders. Do they have the
freshness of vision, the enlightened attitude, and the professional courage to
foster a truly open and fertile cultural environment for employees, partners, customers, and individuals to develop disruptive ideas? And are those leaders then
willing to actively embrace those ideas
and tenaciously drive their transition into
market-changing products, services, and
disruptive business models?
Ultimately, the true point of inflection lies
at the intersection between digitally-inspired
opportunities, the power of original thought,
and mastering the leadership art of delivering creative disruption. – Paul Tate.
OMING UP WITH ORIGINAL IDEAS HAS NEVER BEEN
EASY. You can design all the right processes, provide the most advanced tools, and encourage people with all the rewards you can
think of, but generating truly disruptive, game-changing ideas can
still remain an elusive goal.