To Sara and Marjorie
To Gitte and Henrik (a.k.a. mor og far)
Some time ago, on one of those beautiful days Barcelona has lots of, we sat in an office at IESE Business School and decided to put our ideas into writing. At that point, Paddy had already published a book called Mission Critical Leadership, and that had taken him one year to write. Since we were two people, we figured this book would take us half a year to write.
That, dear reader, is not how the arithmetic of bookwriting works. The ideas in this book are a fully shared intellectual work, born through our long collaboration and fathered by both of us in equal measure. However, we are far from the only authors of this book. Like the innovations we have described in these pages, our ideas have been brought to life over a long period of time, through the creative spaces we have been fortunate enough to be immersed in. Below, in more or less random order, we have listed the many people who together formed the social and professional architecture allowing us to write this book. Obviously, if any mistakes made it into these pages, these are the people you should blame we alone are responsible.
THE MANAGERS. First and foremost, this book would not have been possible without all those managers who, over the years, have kindly allowed us to take part of their daily lives, letting us see how they went about making innovation happen. Many of these managers have become good friends, and several contributed to this book with ideas of their own: Jordan Cohen at Pfizer, Duncan Newsome at Diageo, Rory Simpson at Telefonica, Michael Campbell at the Dana Corporation, David Rimer at Index Ventures, Rich Raimondi, Paul Jeremaes and Christine Pillon at HP, Karen Morris at Chartis Insurance, Glenn Rogers at Go Travel, Tricia Kullis at Puig, and the many others we can’t mention by name (you know who you are).
A special thanks is owed to Henrik Werdelin from Prehype, who in many ways co-authored the ideas and concepts in this book. If we had to point to a live role model for innovation architects and radical thinkers alike, it would be Henrik.
THE COLLEAGUES. Looking at our own architecture of innovation, IESE Business School has made all the difference. First and foremost, our Dean, Jordi Canals, provided unwavering support for the book, matched only by his calm patience as the writing and editing slouched glacially towards completion. Eric Weber, Frederic Sabrià, Giuseppe Auricchio, Mireia Rius, Mike Rosenberg, Pedro Videla and M. Isabel de Muller also provided crucial support at various stages of the process.
Our thinking has been continually inspired by the work of our fellow scholars of innovation: Josep Valor, Tony Dávila, Sandra Sieber, Joaquim Vilà, Bruno Cassiman, Fabrizio Ferraro, Magda Rosenmöller, Julia Prats, Alejandro Lago, Victor Martínez de Albéniz, Evgeny Káganer, Jan Simon, Marco Tortoriello, Pedro Nueno and José Luis Nueno. Marta Elvira, Carlos Sanchez-Runde, Brian O’Connor Leggett, Max Torres and our other colleagues of the department of Managing People in Organizations have provided an always stimulating collegial environment, as have Wim den Tuinder, Luise Zinke, Berit Dencker, Mark Wuyten, David Zorn, Idunn Jónsdóttir, Sylvia Johansson, Katherine Semler, Megan Shapleigh and all the other great people at IESE.
We’re also grateful to IESE’s teams of corporate entrepreneurs around the world, not least Kip Meyer, Paul Gallagher, Rich Sabreen, Begoña de Ros Raventós and Elisabeth Boada in New York; Andreas Bernhardt and Christoph Burger at ESMT in Berlin; and the team at the China-Europe International Business School (CEIBS): Pablo Fernandez, Juan Antonio Fernandez, Rama Velamuri, Hobbs Liu and Claudia Lin. A special thanks goes to Azra Brankovic, our tireless Research Associate, Susana Minguell Moya-Angeler, whose expertise has been invaluable, and Pilar Pallas Sanchez, who has kept us sane and smiling throughout the process.
THE AGENT. Esmond Harmsworth, literary agent extraordinaire, took on our rough book proposal and guided us though several careful rounds of revision, patiently guiding us as we hammered our core ideas into a coherent whole. Along with Joanne Wyckoff, Caryn Levin, and the rest of his team at Zachary Shuster Harmsworth, Esmond proved to be an invaluable companion to the publishing process: co-shaping our ideas, deftly handling the occasional complication, and generally being a voice of reason, support and whispered humorous asides. We consider ourselves uniquely lucky in getting an agent like Esmond who not only understands publishing, but who also possesses a deep personal understanding of innovation and could help us elucidate our core ideas.
THE PUBLISHER. Together with Esmond Harmsworth and Henrik Werdelin, our editor Melinda Merino from Harvard Business Review Press is the ’Fifth Beatle’ of this book. The invisible editorial hand behind Blue Ocean Strategy and many other bestsellers, Melinda not only believed in our book’s potential; more importantly, she helped us realize that potential, spending countless hours working with us on the manuscript. Melinda’s constructive feedback and spot-on suggestions for improvements, garnished with generous helpings of praise and humor, made the editing process a pleasure and was supremely helpful in clarifying and condensing our ideas.
We also benefited tremendously from the detailed comments of four innovation experts – Scott Anthony of Innosight, Julian Birkinshaw of London Business School, Alberto Colzi and Astrid Sandoval – who kindly agreed to review our manuscript and provide feedback on it. We are very grateful for their insightful comments and suggestions, which proved to be of crucial value as we worked on improving the manuscript.
Finally, Melinda’s extended team at Harvard – Courtney Cashman, Erin Brown, Elizabeth Baldwin, Sally Ashworth, Jennifer Waring, Stephani Finks, Nina Nocciolino, Tracy Williams, Mary Dolan, John Wynne, Audra Longert, David Champion and Jane Gebhart – made the entire process a pleasure to partake in, and handled our occasional eccentricities with grace and humor. Together, they form one of the most capable, professional, well-oiled teams the publishing world has to offer.
THE SUPPORTERS. Besides the above-mentioned names, a small army of people helped us along the way. Astrid Sandoval’s keen intellect helped shape our nascent ideas and her advice played a critical role in the publishing process. Christoffer Lorenzen’s razor-sharp mind provided us with numerous new insights for the book. Casper Willer’s deep understanding of creativity and branding gave us new perspectives on our own thinking. Christian Budtz’s unique eye for strategic creative communication took the book to a new level. Anders Ørjan Jensen’s perspectives on organizational realpolitik made us understand the need for a different approach to innovation. Luciana Silvestri of Harvard Business School lent us her incandescent mind and omnibus-like knowledge of the academic literature. Café G in Copenhagen and Berkli Parc café in New York, run by Mark Hernandez and Brook Harkavy Hernandez, provided the perfect writing environments. Andy Cairns, Mark Turrell, Silvia Bellezza, Koen Klokgieters, Freek Duppen, Robert Christofferson, David Collis, Steven Dean, Anne Skare Nielsen, Bruce MacDonald, Harris Gordon, Mike Bayler, Tanya Carr-Waldron, Seth Appel, Agathe Blanchon-Ehrsam, Nick Hahn, Tammy Tan, Mike McCready, Jack Coyne, Steven Poelmans, Erin McCloy, and Bo Kousgaard all provided pieces of the puzzle. A number of friends gave us input on very early drafts, including Ann Akari Kohatsu, Sophie Jourlait-Filéni, Juliaan Bol, Rasmus Vendler Toft, Pooja Midha, and Jonas Heide Smith. Lise Lauridsen and John Sheeley provided peace of mind.
A special thanks goes to the members of the Danish mafia, who provided help with everything from content suggestions to general strategic and emotional support: Philip Petersen, Julie Paulli Budtz, Maria Fiorini, Mette Walter Werdelin, Ulrik Trolle, Peter Heering, Hans Werdelin, Marie Kastrup, Johan Frøshaug, Cecilie Muus Willer, Marcus Knuth, Simon Schultz, Birgit Løndahl, Niels Jørgen Engel, Lisbet Borker, Mik Strøyberg, Anna Frellsen, Flemming Fog, Gritt Løschenkohl and the world’s best godfather, Mikael Olufsen.
A very special thanks is owed to Erich Joachimsthaler, who helped us take the first critical step of the journey, and who has been a constant source of advice, support and good ideas throughout the process. Erich, thanks for all the inspiration.
THE FAMILY. Last but not least, if there was a Nobel prize for loving patience, our two families would surely have received it multiple times. None of this would have been possible without Sara, Sebastian, Georgina, Gitte, Henrik, Gregers, Merete, Clara, Carl-Johan and Arendse. We love you.