The use of websites for crowdsourcing user input for service innovation purposes has become popular. Customers and other stakeholders are invited to propose, comment on and vote for suggestions and ideas for product and service innovations. Catchphrases such as ‘the smartest people do not work for you’ and ‘the wisdom of crowds’ epitomize the ambition, yet companies might find it surprisingly difficult to manage and convert heterogeneous insights from the crowd into actual innovations. The chapter examines the experiences of two companies: an IT company using a company-internal website for gathering and elaborating ideas from their 10 000 employees, and a bank with four years of experience with an ideation website for engaging its customers in contributing ideas for service innovation. Findings suggest that companies experience trust-related issues because of the expectations raised by inviting an extended network of people into innovation work. The companies as trustees need to ensure they can be trusted by following up on contributions, or else the innovation websites become empty tokens of employee and customer involvement and empowerment.
Tor W. Andreassen, Simon Clatworthy, Tore Hillestad and Marika Lüders
Edited by Marika Lüders, Tor W. Andreassen, Simon Clatworthy and Tore Hillestad
Marika Lüders, Tor W. Andreassen, Simon Clatworthy and Tore Hillestad
In the introductory chapter, the editors respond to the fundamental goal for any firm: to maintain and build customer trust. The overall themes of the book are innovation, trust and customer experience. The book’s title – Innovating for Trust – reflects trust as an antecedent to adoption and commercial success, as well as an outcome of adoption and commercial success. In short, managers and innovators need to build trust into all activities of innovation. The chapter starts by defining and discussing the notion of innovation. Attempts to innovate are ultimately about forecasting what the future entails, and what customers may want. Innovative capabilities consequently include creative change thinking; not as an isolated act of a genius but as acts of picking up signals of change and opportunities. Also discussed are dimensions and types of innovations, and the editors distinguish between radical and incremental innovations, on the one hand, and sustaining and disruptive innovations, on the other hand. The notion of the innovation journey as a guide for reading the book is offered, together with an overview of the main contributions of the different parts of the book.