Influencing innovation in SME’s : from designer to transitional engineer

Pozzey, Erica, Bucolo, Sam, & Wrigley, Cara (2013) Influencing innovation in SME’s : from designer to transitional engineer. In Davidsson, Per (Ed.) Proceedings of the Australian Centre (ACE) for Entrepreneurship Research Exchange Conference, QUT Business School, Brisbane, QLD, pp. 1-13.

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Abstract

The following paper presents insights found during an ongoing industry engagement with a family-owned manufacturing SME in Australia. The study seeks to unpack cultural, strategic, product opportunities and challenges available to the firm engaging in a design led approach to innovation. Design led innovation finds new market opportunities to innovate through a holistic perspective of both the internal business operations, focusing on the customer experience and external stakeholders. The action research based methodology consisted of 25 semi-structured interviews, a reflective journal and focus group, all of which were analysed thematically. This paper focuses on the resultant themes of the focus group data constituting a discussion around the best strategies to try and integrate design thinking as a fundamental skill across the company. The main thematic results included the participant’s limited views of themselves (in current roles) as being to create ‘buy-in’ to change initiatives, a preference to act as a group to gain traction in the firm, importance of better defining the problem before reaching a design solution and lastly the time required to implement versus the need for change. These findings are valuable in assisting other family owned firms in managing core growth activities with design and innovation initiatives, particularly in the area of new product development.

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ID Code: 57122
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: Yes
ISBN: 978-1-921897-55-9
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > DESIGN PRACTICE AND MANAGEMENT (120300) > Design Innovation (120302)
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Design
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 [please consult the author]
Deposited On: 11 Feb 2013 22:20
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2014 07:12

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