INNOCULTURE Board Game

INNOCULTURE is a board game, based on the European Innovation Management Standard. By playing the game, you get an overview of the innovation best practices described in the standard. You work through three game scenarios, where you in each scenario need to discuss what to focus on, based on the information given and the amount of resources you have. Playing INNOCULTURE gives you a solid understanding not only about the various focus areas, but also concrete ideas to what is needed in your organisation to create an innovation management system and culture that works in your organisation. The main focus areas of the INNOCULTURE Game are:

  • Strategy: Formulating of long-term innovation goals for the organisation
  • Systems: Creating a systematic innovation mangement system to ensure consistency in innovation processes
  • Leadership: Top-level support and ressources for innovation
  • Organisation: Establishment of framework and climate that fosters innovation
  • Projects: Enhancing the organisations capacity to do innovation projects
  • Surroundings: Innovation activities related to the business context of the organisation

Each of the main headlines constitutes an element in the game, with innovation culture tying it all together:

InnoCultureGame

This is how you can benefit from INNOCULTURE

  1. INNOCULTURE is a great way to learn about innovation, e.g. through Innovation Training
  2. Use INNOCULTURE as an entry point to the European Innovation Management Standard
  3. Use INNOCULTURE as an interactive element in your Innovation Events, in FORTH projects, or in Innovation Camps
  4. Enhance your Innovation Knowledge with INNOCULTURE
  5. Use INNOCULTURE to facilitate a discussion in your organisation about Innovation Culture
  6. In your project group, use INNOCULTURE to put perspective into your Innovation Projects

How to Play INNOCULTURE

The game can be played with groups of 4-6 people. In principle, there is no upper limit to the number of people that can play, but a total number of 30 people is typical, i.e. around 6 groups that compete with each other. The game is played in three rounds, through three scenarios of a fictitious company, which constitutes a 10 year period all together. Each scenario represents a typical set of innovation challenges. The players are briefed before each round, and presented with a description of the basic situation, together with three clues (e.g. letters, mails, news articles etc.) that relate to the given scenario. The group is also equipped with a number of chips, which represent the amount of resources available,

The groups task is now to decide which of the 6 focus areas to work with – but there is a catch: Since the number of resources is limited, the group can only pick two of the six focus areas. The choice of focus areas then scopes the resource allocation. In the first round, the players have 6 chips, which they can use in relation to the chosen focus areas.

For illustration purposes assume that a group has decided to concentrate on the focus areas Systems and Projects. This decision has been based on the groups experience, together with their discussion of the scenario description, and the clues related to the scenario. Once they have agreed on the two focus areas, these two focus pieces are turned, allowing to go into more detail on these two areas:

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The two focus areas now reveal 10 specific initiatives:

Systems:

  • Idea Collection: Inform your employees about your innovation initiatives, and create a framework that allows collection of ideas. This includes also training of relevant employees to organise abd facilitate the idea collection process
  • Collaboration around Ideas: You create physical and social spaces for ideation, and take steps to develop a strong culture, where employees are motivated and educated to collaborate on innovation.
  • Structured Innovation Process: You create and organise tools for innovation, and create a formal overview of milestones, decisions and activities.
  • Knowledge Organisation: You structure your knowledge and best practices about innovation processes, and make it available for all relevant employees.
  • Portfolio Overview: You ensure that you have a clear overview of all innovation activities, including projects, idea campaigns, workshops, tools etc.

Projects:

  • Project Management: You ensure that all project managers have the tools necessary to drive innovation projects.
  • Innovation Competences: Through training of experienced employees as well as new hires, you ensure that your organisation has the necessary skills to generate, select, and develop new concepts.
  • Cross-functional Collaboration: You establish new collaborations across the organisation, knowing that all functions possess useful insights that can leverage your innovation efforts.
  • End User Involvement: You ensure that the end users are involved in all projects, making it possible to try new concepts early on, and to change direction, if necessary.
  • Implementation: You develop an internal model for implementation, and ensure that everybody in the organisation understands the changes associated with realisation of the innovation projects.

Since the amount of resources exceeds the number of initiatives, the group has to agree somehow on the optimal resource allocation. Some initiatives will have more leverage than others, depending on the specific scenario, and this is reflected in the points given: A given resource allocation can have three outcomes:

  • The allocation is very efficient – you gain 2 chips for each chip invested
  • The allocation is efficient – you gain 1 chip for each chip invested
  • The allocation is not efficient – you loose the chips you have invested

In the next round, you are presented with a new scenario, and clues related to this. You also receive additional chips, and have to decide which two additional focus areas you will work on. The initial two areas are still in play.

In the final round, you choose the two remaining areas by default, and get a third scenario description with associated clues.