Innovation process: 5 golden rules to follow

Increase the chances of success of your innovation process thanks to 5 golden rules that we recommend you implement.

Innovation process: 5 golden rules to follow 

An innovation process is not the result of a simple idea; it is the solution found to a need to satisfy. As such, its implementation must be subject to a precise and controlled evolution.

A number of golden rules govern the proper development of an innovation process within a company: following them will increase your chances of success.

Processus d'innovation

What are they and how do you apply them?

1 – Define a clear, comprehensive innovation strategy

How do you find the idea that will meet the expectations of a customer or an industry? It’s not enough to scratch your chin and wait for the revelation to come to you. No, a viable idea is the fruit of a long process of defining objectives upstream.

It’s because you know your company, its strengths and weaknesses, have a good understanding of the market, and have identified the needs of your customers and prospects, that you can embark on an innovation strategy.

The key to a successful innovation project lies in the meticulous organization of this strategy. This stage is the most important, but also the most difficult.

How do you identify the right decisions from the wrong ones?

In part, by using tools that can be used to analyze the reliability, legitimacy and strength of such an innovation: concept boards, analysis and reading grids, determination of consumer expectations, disruptive potential, readiness to change, etc.

2 – Have a clear idea of commercial and technological developments 

The innovation market is in perpetual motion. Progress in terms of new technologies forces companies to keep up with developments and to know how to adapt. So it’s essential to have a department dedicated to observing these changes and spotting the latest trends.


The idea is to know where the company stands in terms of technology, and to be able to determine whether this can be compatible with customer expectations. Competition is fierce, which is why we need to analyze it accurately.


Being alert to innovations that are about to be launched, having an idea of the services that are likely to appeal to consumers… All this helps you to stay one step ahead. And that’s very useful, provided you know how to play it smart.

3 – Set up a solid management structure to better manage ideas and the innovation process 

One flaw in the organization and weeks, months or even years of thought are likely to go up in smoke. For an idea to take shape in the best possible conditions, it needs a framework. Whether it comes from an employee, a consultant, an entrepreneur or the entire workforce, it cannot be properly developed if it does not have a suitable structure. To begin with, you need to be able to sort through the flood of ideas.

Once gathered – via brainstorming, an idea management software or mind mapping – these ideas will be listed and analyzed. This collection of ideas must be completed by a prioritization based on the project’s potential for realization and success. Once selected, the idea is discussed in small or large groups, so as to grasp as soon as possible its impact internally.


4 – Introducing a new product to the market and supporting change 

Let’s imagine that employees have reacted well to the introduction of this new idea on the market, and that all the conditions seem to be in place for the project to succeed. You’d think that the potential for success was no longer open to question, that the future of the product or service was a foregone conclusion.

However, an innovation needs to be introduced to the market in an almost pedagogical way. The change must be completed by a clear statement of the new product’s usefulness, and an explanation of its conditions of use.

A new product doesn’t just appear out of the blue, so it’s essential to prepare the groundwork beforehand. This means defining the strategy, objectives, risks, resources and prospects of such an innovation. Knowing where the project is going is one way of limiting the risk of failure.

5 – Assign tasks to a competent, committed project manager 

The idea has been validated, the market studied, the resources made available: everything seems ready for the realization phase. But before that, we mustn’t forget one essential element…

Who’s going to run the project?

The author of the idea is often left out of this task, as he or she is too intimate with the idea, although it is necessary to include him or her in the crucial phases of development. Steering the project should be the responsibility of someone who knows how to handle atypical situations and plan the project’s progress properly.


Surrounded by a team to which he assigns certain key tasks, the project manager must be on all fronts. Ultimately, the most important thing is to have a committed, dynamic team ready to take the project as far as it can go.

It’s a long road, sometimes fraught with pitfalls, but the difficulties will soon be forgotten once the desired result has been achieved!

Céline Degreef
Céline Degreef

CEO & Co-Founder Yumana

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