Driving Innovation Is The Most Challenging Thing For Successful Firms, According To Kumar Manglam Birla
Reaching the top isn’t just a stroke of luck. Even if you do reach the top by luck, one thing is for sure- you aren’t going to hold there for too long.
According to Kumar Mangalam Birla, chairman of the Aditya Birla Group, one of the largest conglomerates in India, the most challenging task for successful firms is to drive innovation. It is not because they can’t, but there isn’t a compelling incentive to disrupt themselves.
In a long note written by Birla, he shared his insight.
The Aditya Birla Group chief said, “Driving innovation at an institutional level in diversified business groups is never easy. Insurgent competitors often use this as a wedge to drive their way into markets.”
According to Birla, innovation can act both as a bulwark against insurgents and as a means to penetrate and capture new opportunities.
He also added, “While we have a rich legacy of driving inside-out innovation, my learning over the last few years has been that ‘outside-in’ frameworks can also be equally effective.”
Birla highlighted in the note that with the help of the company’s outreach programme, Bizlabs, the company has several engagements with startups across the globe including Silicon Valley, Israel, Europe, Singapore, and India. These engagements cover a wide range of applications including logistics, packaging, sustainability, fintech, and home building innovation, to name a few.
He noted, “As I have now learnt, innovation cannot be bound by traditional organisational cadence. It requires different incentives and often longer time horizons.”