Can Big Companies Really Be Innovative?

15 May 2019

With guest Gary Pisano - Professor and Senior Associate Dean, Harvard Business School


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Innovation. It’s the most overused buzzword in business. It’s also a catalyst for growth. But is it possible for big companies to be truly innovative? Or are they destined for creative destruction? Gary Pisano, Professor and Senior Associate Dean at Harvard Business School, has spent his career studying and working with innovative companies. His book, Creative Construction: The DNA of Sustained Innovation, unpacks the three pillars of innovation: strategy, systems, and culture. He joins the podcast to bust the myth that “big is ugly” when it comes to innovation. And he explains how even the biggest companies can be designed and led in ways that turn them into forces of transformative innovation.

Listen to this podcast episode to learn:

  • The unique challenges larger companies face when it comes to innovation
  • Why culture is the “software of the organization” that drives innovation
  • The importance of “absorptive capacity” and the influence of the outside world on innovative organizations
  • Why innovation requires a tolerance for failure and an intolerance for incompetence
  • Underestimating the value of improving an existing technology when threatened by a disruptor
  • How every employee in an organization can be innovative, impact culture, and create value for customers
  • The problem with “innovation fatigue”

For more information on Creative Construction.