18 June 2017, 3pm:

Timo Bernhard crosses the finish line in his Porsche for his second victory in the “24 Hours of Le Mans”.

What sounds like a typical process – Porsche had already won in 2015 and 2016 – resembled a sensation.
Three and a half hours after the start, the Porsche had to enter the pits due to technical problems and dropped back to 55th place. Meanwhile the direct competitors, two Toyota cars, took the lead.
Only one Porsche left in the top field, which later also had to leave due to technical problems.

But then came the two decisive hours of the race in which everything changed. Within a very short time all Toyota cars failed one after the other – the leading one due to a clutch failure and the second due to a similar defect the Porsche had before.
The Porsche team, which had fallen behind, saw its chance. Instead of Toyota, however, a completely different team was now leading – from the LMP 2 (one class smaller). The sensation was in the air.
However, one hour before the end Timo Bernhard caught up with the winner and overtook him.
The race was decided A historic victory for Porsche.

In the last contributions, topics such as lack of practice orientation at universities and lack of innovation and the chances of open innovation were highlighted. But what does the whole thing have to do with the Le-Mans race described above?

From the process we can filter three core messages for the topic of innovation that are fundamental:

  1. Innovation can only succeed through the competition of several different approaches.
  2. Innovation ideas must be exposed to reality and tested on external factors.
  3. Resting on today’s success is one of the most likely indicators of tomorrow’s failure.

What would have happened if Porsche had only started with one car?

What would have happened if the race had ended before Toyota had to retire due to technical problems?

What would have happened if there had been no competition between Toyota and Porsche and therefore no motivation to repair the car in record time?

Innovation has to face competition before costly implementation. To lose all cars in the race and thus also the race itself can and must not be an option for companies in the future; the world has become too fast-moving for that.
Innovation must be closely geared to its target group. If a race lasts 24 hours, a car must be able to complete the distance.
In addition, adaptation must take place quickly to be successful – Porsche could only win because their team repaired Timo Bernhard’s Porsche in record time.
We face corresponding challenges not only in the area of product development, but also in the ever faster changing field of management and employer branding. (The challenge of New Work is right on our doorstep.)

We have to stop repeating the same mistakes again and again

Only innovation today can protect the strong German economy of tomorrow. Andreas Kluth describes exactly this in his book “Hannibal and Me” and points out a system throughout human history: the safest indicator for future failure is constant success today. Hannibal won almost all of his battles throughout his life. Nevertheless, he never conquered Rome and plunged Carthage into an insurmountable crisis. Toyota was in the lead with two cars and lost anyway. In contrast to those at Porsche, the technical defects could not be repaired there.
If you don’t invest in innovation despite your excellent market position, Nokia 2.0 is in danger.

These observations lead to a central insight: More decentralized open innovation is needed – innovation created in competition by the direct target or affected group.

This is exactly where ekipa comes in. Especially in Germany, the pressure to innovate increases enormously. We are countering this with the large amount of untapped – and mostly untapped – innovation potential of young people in order to master the challenges of tomorrow.

Homo Innovatio

Only slowly are we beginning to take advantage of the innovation potential and above all the willingness of young people to get involved. At ekipa we’re starting now.

Young people must have the opportunity to become involved in innovation – to play an active role in shaping their own future.

As digital natives, most people are predestined to shape and shape the digital future.

The advantages, which result particularly for young students from putting their knowledge into practice, were already outlined in the preceding Blog entries.

Through their commitment, companies get the opportunity to meet their current problems with new innovative ideas and to review their business models with regard to topicality in order not to hurry from one small victory to the next like Hannibal and miss out on the big changes and challenges.


Paving the way for innovation

We want to make it possible for young people to get involved by giving them access to real business and organisational challenges via our online platform (and also via the so-called University Battle). The whole process takes place in teams – in short: crowd teaming.

Our platform makes it possible for different, colourfully mixed teams to work directly and colloboratively on challenges for companies and organisations and to create opportunities for the future. From the existing crowd, teams are formed on the basis of skills and preferences, which then start working on the questions.

The Platform fo

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