Ideation Sessions: Pairing Innovative Service Concepts with Great Business Models

One of the fundamental tenets of the ng Connect Program is that innovative service ideas need to be complemented by viable business models.  As experience has shown repeatedly, even the best technology or service in a given market will eventually fail if it lacks a sustainable business model.

During ng Connect Program ideation sessions, the objective is to bring together a mix of people, companies, products, and technologies to create new services that uniquely solve particular problems or open up new opportunities.  Once a service idea emerges and can be simply explained, the immediate next step is defining a business model. The end result is an innovative service that can gain and sustain market traction and profitability.

Ideating in this way has always been part of the ng Connect model, but at the same time it has evolved. Initially, the business model was developed through brief discussions and rough sketches. Outputs varied greatly from team to team, and often explaining the models was difficult because a common language was not being used.

Enter the business model canvas – a key tool in today’s ideation sessions that has improved both process and outputs.  The canvas consists of nine key business model elements organized so the relation between value creation, delivery, and capture are simple to see and understand. This tool is introduced before ideation begins so session participants have a common baseline and understanding and are able to communicate and discuss business models more effectively. It also helps participants better understand the potential value of each proposed service concept.

The business model canvas was recently used for ideation sessions in Taiwan and New Zealand. Feedback from participants who were trained in and then used the canvas was overwhelmingly positive, ranging from “it was fun using the canvas” to “it helped us discover issues that we otherwise would not have considered”.  When the teams needed to explain their ideas to others, doing so was faster and easier than it had been before they used the canvas, which will continue to be an important ng Connect tool.

Why not see for yourself how bringing together smart people from many companies with cool technologies, and then giving them effective tools to collaborate, can lead to great service ideas and viable business models? Join us for an upcoming ideation session and not only will you help generate innovations, you’ll also take away tools that you can apply to your business.

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