Case Studies » Telecommunications Management Leader

Creating a Culture of Innovation

Breaking silos to create a culture of innovation, curiosity, and alignment

Diverse business team practicing design thinking

Engagement at-a-glance

A leading communications technology company landed a lucrative federal contract. Fast forward a few years, and that contract accounted for more than 80 percent of the company's revenue.

Realizing the financial risk that would come should they ever lose that contract, they began working to bring additional products to market to diversify their revenue streams.

Unfortunately, that proved more complicated than they thought. Fortunately, however, they already had a partner in Celerity, a partner that could help them unlock the creativity and innovation that would allow them to overcome their roadblocks and build something truly innovative.

Our team of innovation experts focused on:

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Providing a framework for generating, testing, and validating new product ideas

innovative disruption

Overcoming silos and other organizational barriers to innovation

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Creating a culture of innovation and curiosity where everyone's contribution is welcome

The challenge

The organization committed time and resources to develop a solution to verify communications, but the market did not receive it well. The team lacked an understanding of the potential customers’ needs and a framework for innovating, prototyping, and testing new products. Teams were siloed, so even gaining alignment on where to invest time and resources was difficult.

Celerity's mission

Remove the barriers to innovation and give them a framework for identifying the high-value opportunities, ideating new solutions/models, and validating these ideas through prototyping and testing.

The solution

Celerity introduced the organization to Design Sprints, an innovative way to identify and build new products and services. Think of it like building a house: Having the best builders and materials is no good if the owners can't agree on a design direction. In this case, they had the technologists and industry knowledge, but stakeholders weren’t sure what they should build or even which market problem to pursue.

Design thinking for innovation

After undertaking a "listening tour" to truly understand their challenges, the Celerity team hosted design thinking training sessions to help the customer's teams reframe their approach to innovation. That started with training them on the seven stages of design thinking:

  • Frame: Define the complex problem you’ll tackle to focus the sprint
  • Empathize: Understanding your potential users and what problems they may have
  • Define: Research and identify how you can help solve these problems
  • Ideate: Generate a raft of new ideas — and no idea is too big or too "outside the box"
  • Prototype: Build an MVP
  • Test: Learn what users think of the MVP and its ability to solve their problem
  • Implement: Use what you've learned to iterate on the MVP's features

After the "ideate" phase, we helped the team validate whether the solution the team landed on had the potential to truly deliver value to the customer by leveraging the expertise of their advisory board.

Creating a culture primed for innovation

An innovation culture must be carefully crafted to achieve actual results. As we worked with the team, we introduced and honed critical aspects such as psychological safety, challenging assumptions, playing off of diverse ideas, and emphasizing “think tank”-style working sessions over progress reports—igniting out-of-the-box thinking and market speed. It also empowers employees to be part of the solution, drastically increasing job satisfaction and retention.

The outcome

Celerity helped a company that had struggled to innovate for years unlock its true potential. After multiple attempts to build a prototype had failed for various reasons, our design-thinking training—along with the Agile methodologies, we were already working to help them implement—empowered the team to bring a successful prototype to market.

For an organization whose revenue comes almost entirely from a single account, it's nothing short of game-changing.

Get in touch

In today's world of relentless change and disruption, you don't need to go it alone. Ready to see how Celerity can help you deliver better customer experiences and create a problem-solving culture that turns change into opportunity? Reach out to us today.