Hands-Off Approach to Open Innovation Doesn’t Work
A study reported in the Harvard Business Review examined 200 innovation collaborations between big firms and tech startups which identified a major split in the way senior leadership at the large firms handled collaboration. On one side, senior leaders took a very hands-off approach. They didn’t exert heavy control in the negotiation stage, and afterward, when strategic, operational, or cultural mismatches between big and small arose, they left it to the innovation teams to solve them. On the other side were the hands-on, or active, senior leaders at the big companies. This group worked to anticipate and resolve problems before any product codevelopment even began. The study reported three key differences between what the hands-on companies did and what the hands-off ones attempted.
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