Friday, January 26, 2007

Trophy Ideas

In a recent post called Beyond Citizen Journalism, I wrote about customer-made innovation. Now there’s news of a contest from Henkel called the Henkel Innovation Trophy. To add further impetus to the manufacturer’s internal innovation efforts, the competition invites independent inventors from around the world to submit concepts for any of the company’s four businesses including laundry/home care and cosmetics/toiletries. The idea is that through effective collaboration, new products can be introduced into the market faster, more effectively and more efficiently. To expedite product introduction, inventors are encouraged to submit ideas for which patents or patent applications already exist. A submission form is available at the Henkel Web site. Susan Krambo, who is with Henkel corporate brand management, says the initiative has resonated positively so far. The award includes the Henkel Innovation Trophy, a cash prize and the opportunity to enter into an agreement with the company covering commercialization of the associated proprietary rights.

What has your company done to spur innovation? Special teams? Outside collaboration? Contests? What’s working?


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