Discussion: Champions of Innovation

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Discussion: Champions of Innovation

Discussion: Champions of Innovation

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Despite an open and free work culture, a rigid and procedure‐fi lled structure is imposed for making timely decisions and executing plans. For example, when designing new features, the team and senior managers meet in a large conference room. They use the right side of the conference room walls to digitally project new features and the left side to project any tran- scribed critique with a timer clock giving everyone 10 minutes to lay out ideas and fi nalize features. Thus, Google utilizes rigorous, data‐driven procedures for evaluating new ideas in the midst of a chaotic innovation process.

Nine notions of innovations are embedded in the organizational culture, processes, and structure of Google: 22

1. “Innovation Comes from Anywhere”: All Google employees can innovate.

2. “Focus on the User”: When focus is on the user, the money and all else will follow.

■ CASE STUDY 1‐2 Google

21 https://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/partners/sap/sap‐vmware‐lego‐cs‐en.pdf (accessed September 11, 2015). 22 Kathy Chin Long , “ Google Reveals its Nine Principles of Innovations ,” Fast Company , http://www.fastcompany.com/3021956/how‐to‐be‐a‐success‐ at‐everything/googles‐nine‐principles‐of‐innovation (accessed March 30, 2015 )

Sources: Adapted from Michelle Colin , “ Champions of Innovation ,” Businessweek 3989 (June 1 8 , 2006 ), 18–26 , http://www.bloomberg. com/bw/stories/2006‐06‐18/champions‐of‐innovation; Vauhini Vara , “ Pleasing Google ’ s Tech‐Savvy Staff ” (March 18, 2008 ) , B6; Jason Bloomberg , “ Google ’ s Three‐Pronged Enterprise Strategy ,” Forbes Online (December 12, 2014 ) ; and Connor Forrest , “ Four Ways Google Makes Money ,” TechRepublic (January 16, 2015 ) , http://www.techrepublic.com/article/four‐ways‐google‐makes‐money‐ outside‐of‐advertising/ (accessed August 21, 2015 ).

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This chapter introduces the concept of building competitive advantage using information systems‐based applications. It begins with a discussion of a set of eras that describe the use of information resources historically. It then presents information resources as strategic tools, discussing information technology ( IT ) assets and IT capabilities. Michael Porter ’ s Five Com- petitive Forces model then provides a framework for discussing strategic advantage, and his Value Chain model addresses tactical ways organizations link their business processes to create strategic partnerships. We then introduce the Piccoli and Ive ’ s model to show how strategic advantage may be sustained in light of competitive barriers while the Resource‐ Based View focuses on gaining and maintaining strategic advantage through information and other resources of the fi rm. The chapter concludes with a brief discussion of strategic alliances, co‐opetition, risks of strategic use of IT, and cocreating IT and business strategy. Just as a note: this chapter uses the terms competitive advantage and strategic advantage interchangeably.

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