How to Tap into Structured Innovation for Process Improvement—A Steelcase Case Study



Genna Weiss
07/08/2009

In this Profit through Process podcast, Genna Weiss of Six Sigma IQ speaks with Tim Schipper and Mark Swets, Lean internal consultants for Steelcase and authors of Innovative Lean Development: How to Create, Implement and Maintain a Learning Culture Using Fast Learning Cycles, who discuss how their company has leveraged structured innovation for process improvement.

Schipper and Swets take you through the structured innovation methodology, developed by the Huthwaite Innovation Institute, which they deem to be the most effective for innovation and process improvement. This structured innovation methodology is composed of four different elements of innovation, including addressing the needs of your customers; generating, categorizing and capturing ideas and bringing them up for later solutions; measuring your ideas against the value of your customer; and bringing in outside thinking. Schipper and Swets explain how to apply this structured innovation methodology with a Steelcase case study.

This podcast explains how the structured innovation methodology is very tightly linked to Lean and Six Sigma and how all of these process improvement methodologies can be used alongside each other within an organization. In addition, Schipper and Swets discuss the major challenges of applying structured innovation to improving a process and how to overcome these challenges.