Searching for innovation is something we do in an incubator: the breeding ground for new ideas that make up an organisation’s future earning capacity.
We start by conducting research into the current situation, with a focus on the client/user. Distilling the pains and critical assumptions from this situation will lead to new insights. These form the playing field we will then focus on. The next step, however, does not involve coming up with solutions.
We believe that every problem has already been solved at one time, so the first thing we do is carefully consider what is happening on a global level and what others have already come up with. With trends, Blue Ocean thinking and Branchmarking, we explore as many possibilities as we can.
Based on the results of this exploratory phase, Six Fingers will work together with the incubator team to develop new concepts that form a solution to the pains we identified. The next step is an important one: making choices. Which concept is truly innovative within the market? Which concept fits perfectly with the pains? Which concept matches the organisation’s competences best? We stay on our toes at all times and force the Incubator team to make choices.
The result? A truly innovative concept for a product or service or a possible start-up that is ready for the next phase of development: the accelerator.
1 Research leads to a well-founded understanding of the current situation. Techniques such as shadowing and cultural probes are used to truly see through the eyes of the user and immerse us in their experiences.
2 Six Fingers constantly challenges the incubator team to let go of its dominant logic and reflect on its operations. Six Fingers focuses on what truly matters and never stops searching for the user’s pains and the most critical assumptions.
3 The incubator is independent from the business itself. A separate incubator project and team are established and given the freedom to think outside the box and be completely innovative. Together with the team, we examine trends and apply methods such as Blue Ocean and Branchmarking. These help us let go of existing concepts and be truly innovative.
Sigma Coatings supplies paint to professional painters and creates innovation within their market. After conducting research in Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, during which we shadowed painters and foremen for days on end and spoke to clients who outsource their paintwork, we gained new insights for potential innovation. These insights formed the foundation for an extensive Blue Ocean and Branchmarking process, which led to several new concepts. One of these concepts grew into an entirely new business model for Sigma Coatings.