Frequently Asked Questions

Idélaboratoriet is a consulting company specializing in creativity and innovation. Idélaboratoriet was founded in 2000.

Idélaboratoriet works in the field of creativity and innovation. We create value for our clients for example through innovation strategy planning, facilitation of creative processes, training programs in professional idea creation and implementation of digital idea management solutions.

Idélaboratoriet is Swedish for The Idea Lab.

Idélaboratoriet was founded in Sweden and has its headquarters in Malmö in southern Sweden, but works with clients worldwide.

Idélaboratoriet likes to say that creativity is a process of getting original ideas that have some sort of value and innovation is the profitable implementation of creativity.

Call +46 734 340031. Please do not hesitate to contact us for a discussion on how we can help your organization!


#34 The Art of Saying YES… and NO!

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The Serious Innovation Newsletter #34

When did Bill Gates understand that his operating system was the billion dollar idea? How can you know that the animated Crazy Frog will become a huge hit? What can the venture capitalists use more than pure gut feeling when taking a quick investment decision in Dragon’s Den? In this beautiful world of innovation there is a continuous battle between supplying more resources for the development of ideas and taking the right decision at the right time to say stop. The battle between YES and NO is always present. And when the market of the tomorrow has the right answer – there are no easy answers today.

Let me just start by telling you that, despite the headline, this is neither a new dating game tip about how to reach a “yes” nor a parent’s guide about how raise to your children. This is a story about innovation. And after ten years in the field I am in many cases still completely lost. When one in an early phase of the idea process is shown hundreds of ideas and gets the question: which one of this is the blockbuster, the megahit, the new iPod? It too often becomes a guessing game even though scenarios are built, thorough matrices are made and market surveys and tests are done. Maybe it was easier in the good old industrial age to understand if a technology had potential or not, but on the globalized “experience” market of today the only thing you can be really sure about is… that you are wrong!

You can do research to the edge of madness, but the needs of the future are still often hidden in a thick fog. A classic example is when Motorola – with the help of McKinsey – asked the American public if they believed that they would have need to communicate wirelessly 24/7, if they would like to have a phone with them at all times. The contemporary market said: no, why would that be necessary and swish Motorola stopped their mobile phone venture and Scandinavia became the telecom center of the world with Nokia and Ericsson at the top.

A friend of mine owned a media company that produced animations and films to the TV-industry. One day one of his employees showed him a mad animated blue frog that sounded weird and drove around on a moped. He didn’t think more about that funny little skunk work at the time, but a couple of years later Crazy Frog was earning hundreds of millions as a cell phone signal, as a music hit being number one on several charts around the world, as a animated tv-series, as a computer game et cetera. WHO KNEW?

Today, one of the most debated subjects within the innovation industry is how to better calculate the prospect of ideas already in an early phase to be able to stop more projects before they start costing too much money. Innovation managers battle with the task to make their futures more transparent and in the long run show a better return on investment in their portfolios. And of course you should be very professional when it comes to screening ideas, but you should always know that when the market of the future is your playing field there will always be somewhat a lottery with an indefinite number of factors. My experience is that if you are seeking radical innovation, then good old Einstein’s remarks about choosing ideas is not to be neglected:

if you do not spontaneously laugh the first time you are being told about an idea, then the idea is probably not radical enough!

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