A multinational corporation with considerable resources sought to diversify away from its traditional focus upon selling cigarettes and other tobacco-based products into selling non-combustible nicotine-based solutions and other consumer products. As a key element of this initiative, Oxford Oracle was asked to provide its Marketing and Human Resources teams in both the UK and the US with professional development in innovation.
The Oracle’s Solution:
The Oracle commenced this project by undertaking an interview-based scoping exercise with key stakeholders within the organisation to understand their current familiarity with innovation processes, intellectual property, R&D, and legal and practical routes for protecting proprietary materials. Subsequently, detailed four-day workshops were held face-to-face in both the UK and the US. The following key topics were covered and investigated in detail:
|Innovation Capture||Innovation Roadmapping||Innovation Champions|
|Intellectual Property Rights||Freedom to Operate Exercises||Market Assessments|
|Open Innovation||Cross-Licensing||Portfolio Management|
Action plans for immediate and ongoing execution were created by participants during the workshop and, over the ensuing 12 months, these innovation professionals enjoyed routine access to designated mentors within the Oracle.
Recipients of the professional development and mentorship rated these as excellent (4.8/5) and, perhaps unsurprisingly, reported that the most critical sessions were those in which they created timebound action plans to implement their newly acquired skills and knowledge. Both mid-term and longer term surveys indicate that the information embedded during the Oracle’s sessions has led to positive changes in organisational processes, to recruitment attitudes and outcomes, to innovation management, to R&D priorities and, indeed, to the products which are now at market.