Create the momentum to make innovation take hold across an organization.

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Sustained innovation comes from building an ecosystem where leadership, structures, process, mind-set, and skills converge to create a culture that engages and motivates employees at all functions and at all levels. A thriving innovation culture fosters fresh ideas with market impact and delivers a long-term competitive advantage.

Developing a corporate culture that enables and supports innovation is a journey. It can mean a multi-year commitment; but tangible change can ignite with a few small, targeted steps. Over 20 years we have learned that you cannot push this type of transformation through the organization—you must create pull. Our approach jump-starts this journey and generates business impact early—the kind of impact that will have others asking how soon they too can get involved with innovation.

?What If!’s “Transform” offering is where all our expertise comes together in one place. We use it to create the right journey for each of our partners by:

Acting as catalysts: Sparking change and unlocking inspiration by embedding new skills and behaviors in core teams and then spreading the most impactful new skills across the organization.

Building “pocket universes”: Protecting selected innovation activities/teams to serve as pilots for models that generate tangible impact, cultivating belief and energy across the broader organization.

Harnessing momentum: Using feedback and learning from our pocket universes to define the transformation roadmap—the right sequence, milestones, and pace for organic cultural change.

Cascading across the organization: Broadening the scale and reach of the transformation in order to create the tipping point required to gain belief and energy across the business.

Constructing the right architecture: Embedding the cultural structures that make innovation repeatable: process, tools, incentives, communication, and metrics.

Our approach front-loads the process: We engage leaders and employees in a hands-on, energizing way. We don’t waste time over-engineering the journey; instead, we focus on sparking energy, creating belief, and generating tangible impact. These ways of working unlock innovation in the organization and deliver lasting results.

Recent Work

Working with one of Europe’s leading energy companies, we designed and delivered four “pocket universes”—discrete C.E.O.-sponsored cultural experiments, each pushing one aspect of innovation.

Chosen as the first consulting firm to partner with a global furniture giant in China, we helped revolutionize their sales floor culture, adapting it to the unique Chinese market.

Delivered an innovation program with training, project delivery, and coaching in a nine-month initiative with a leading global confectionary company, producing a pipeline of new products worth $300 million for launch in 2011–2012.

We’re up against brewers twice as big as we are, so we have to beat them on innovation, pure and simple. ?What If! gave our people the vision, skills, and momentum to consistently deliver new product and packaging wins.

Peter Swinburn, President and C.E.O., Molson Coors Brewing Company


FROM the greenhouse