EXPERIENCES WITH IDEA PROMOTING INITIATIVES - WHY THEY DON'T ALWAYS WORK
DS 68-3: Proceedings of the 18th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 11), Impacting Society through Engineering Design, Vol. 3: Design Organisation and Management, Lyngby/Copenhagen, Denmark, 15.-19.08.2011
Editor: Culley, S.J.; Hicks, B.J.; McAloone, T.C.; Howard, T.J. & Cantemessa, M.
Author: Gish, Liv
Section: Design Organisation and Management
In new product development a central activity is to provide new ideas. Over the last decades experiences with stimulating employee creativity and establishing idea promoting initiatives have been made in industrial practice. Such initiatives are often labeled Idea Management – a research field with a growing interest. In this paper I examine three different idea promoting initiatives carried out in Grundfos, a leading pump manufacturer. In the analysis I address what understandings of idea work are inscribed in the initiatives and what role these initiatives play in the organization with respect to idea work. Furthermore I look into what makes these initiatives ‘work’ or ‘not work’. The analysis builds on an in-depth case study made in Grundfos based on 40 interviews with R&D professionals and managers. The managerial implications of the study are that managers should be aware of what understandings of idea work are inscribed in the idea promoting initiatives as they to some degree have to fit with the understandings embedded in practice in order to work.