Scouting for innovative ideas is no more a serendipitous encounter; but a must-do activity for any organization keen to explore opportunities to grow. Whereas improving existing product/technology base is an immediate need across organizations, pro-active organizations often aim to pre-empt competition by introducing new technologies in captured markets.
The scouting exercise has a broad spectrum and, therefore, the context behind conducting it needs to be clearly understood. Depending on the end objective, the approach to scouting will vary and has to be customized accordingly. Due to the resources-intensiveness of the process, a well-thought strategy that combines tapping into the right sources is required.
This paper discusses the innovation scouting’s methodology, pitfalls, and some best practices. It also discusses the collaborative aspect of innovation scouting, the make-up of scouting teams, knowledge systems and tools, and the “kindling the spirit of designing.”