BusinessWeek just published an article that talks about incorporating people that aren’t formally part of your organization into it’s methods for innovating. The article profiles a video game company that leveraged a fan-base on Facebook to create a new game – and along the way they slashed development costs and even a hired a few top coders.
This philosophy of ‘crowdsourcing’ will be critical as we get further into the knowledge economy. I encourage organizations to assess who they count on for success and then develop strategies to incorporate all of those groups into their learning/innovation pipeline. [Note: a value network analysis is a great tool to help visualize this.]
Who does your organization count on for success [i.e. suppliers, consultants, customers,…]? How can you incorporate their insight and suggestions into your next big idea?