Innovation Services

Unlock BIG Growth

Innovate Smarter

Unlock sustainable innovation with BIG's innovation strategy consulting services

The BIG Why

Understand

Know your customers and understand the opportunity landscape

4-6 weeks

The BIG Idea

Ideate

Unlock novel, human-centered ideas based on users needs

6 weeks

The BIG Test

Test

Bring ideas to life, and test them in the real world

4 weeks

The BIG Disruptor

Disrupt

Proactively innovate to be the disruptor in your industry

12 weeks

Our Approach

Built to Disrupt

We use BIG Design Thinking to unlock innovation

BIG Design Thinking

Discover your next BIG thing

  Understand Learn about your users
 Ideate Uncover the user’s unmet needs
  Test Build off insights to create new solutions
  Disrupt Prototype and experiment

BIG Design Thinking Process

The BIG Why™

Before launching an innovative product or service, are you confident that you and your team are addressing the right opportunity? The BIG Why™ surveys the opportunity landscape through your employees' eyes, their understanding of your value proposition, and your customers’ description of their unmet needs. 

This balanced assessment uncovers the “why” behind the orthodoxies that guide your customers’ day-to-day business to uncover new opportunities. We call this the “wish, want, or change.” During this phase, you can expect:

  • Four-to-six week timeframe, depending upon the availability of interviewees
  • Weekly, 30-minute check-in meetings to share initial findings and brainstorm additional sources of industry information and stakeholder interviews
  • A presentation to leadership by Week Six sharing four-to-six top insights for “yes, and” feedback, which become the feedstock for idea generation.

There are two key outcomes from this phase, first, determining the nature of the market opportunities, including maintaining a leadership position, organic growth to challenge the competition, or a leapfrog opportunity to redefine an industry. Second, we deliver candid feedback about the human, financial, and technological resources needed to achieve these objectives.

Sustainable innovation solves a user’s “job to be done.” We help your organization build empathy with customers by understanding the pains and building their trust by creating gains beyond the offerings of your competitors.

Understand

Know your customers and understand the opportunity landscape.

  4-6 Weeks

Find your BIG Why

Ready to unlock innovation in your organisation?

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The BIG Idea™

With agreed-upon user-centered insights in hand, big launches a two-to-three week structured ideation process. We diverge, seeking inspiration from emerging business and social trends outside your industry, the latest research from academic journals, and workarounds from extreme users to name a few.

These adventures lead us to three trustworthy methods often lead us to new, out-of-the-box ideas such as:

  • Modifications to existing solutions, repurposed for a new use case
  • Partnership opportunities from Silicon Valley-based startups and beyond
  • Greenfield development opportunities with emerging technologies and trends

The most valuable outputs from this phase include showing employees and leadership that wild ideas are welcome and inspiring “yes, and,” feedback to build up new ideas based upon a diversity of lived experiences.

Also, this phase aligns leadership by creating transparency in the new idea development process and creates a prioritization of new initiatives given the constraints of time and budget.

Ideate

Bring ideas to life, and test them in the real world

  6 weeks

Unlock the BIG Idea

Ready to unlock innovation in your organisation?

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The BIG Test™

“Design thinking,” is a misnomer; we believe it is a “learn by doing” discipline that requires intentional actions to meet user-centered needs. Day-long, offsite facilitations are simply “innovation theater,” that leave participants “inspired by” what they experienced, but not “inspired to” take action. When The BIG Idea adjourns, what are the next steps? 

With a top one-or-two ideas in hand, we prioritize the assumptions to test, namely those with the greatest importance, but the least understood. Bringing ideas to life is our passion and we take a low-cost, high-impact approach to prototyping. We suggest the following steps over a six-to-ten week period:

  • Our first prototype is defining the business model, exploring the technical feasibility and financial viability of the solutions we know our customers desire.
  • Perfection is the enemy of progress, when exploring technological feasibility, loosely defined features ensure the technology is in service to the user, not the other way around.
  • Financial viability is tested through the Business Model Canvas, exploring existing combinations of resources and customers with the defined value proposition to create a financially-sustainable revenue model and cost structure.

The BIG Test phase ends with board-ready or investor-ready prototypes, along with the supporting business model. At this phase, companies typically “level up” from a desire to maintain to a drive to grow; those with a growth mindset find themselves jumping two moves ahead of the competition.

Test

Proactively innovate to be the disruptor in your industry

12 weeks

Start Your BIG Test

Ready to unlock innovation in your organisation?

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The BIG Disruptor™

Innovation is a lot like a gym membership, we aspire to the outcome, but other priorities disrupt our best intentions.

Our experience is that companies believe they can carry the innovation baton themselves, but initiatives quickly lose momentum. Even dedicated internal champions, like a Director of Innovation or a Chief Innovation Officer often succumb to the pressures of conformity around the status quo.

Thus we provide the objectivity of an outside resource, on an ongoing basis, to maintain and refine the experiences of the previous three steps:

  • For prototypes moving into development, we remain a conduit to new technologies and new use cases to maximize the product’s impact.
  • As educators, we are inspired to continually coach your teams to embody the mindset and practice the processes of design thinking. 
  • Serve as trusted advisors to the executive team and board of directors as new disruptions emerge, start-ups enter the fray, and new technologies seek to upend “business as usual” in your industry

Just as you hire cyber security firms, insurance companies, and lawyers to protect your business, we offer the Berkeley Innovation Group as your protection against disruption.

Disrupt

Proactively innovate to be the disruptor in your industry

  12 weeks

Unlock the BIG Disruptor

Ready to unlock innovation in your organisation?

Contact Us

Case Studies

BIG Results

Have a question for BIG?

BIG Answers

What is design thinking?
Design thinking is a critical thinking methodology using the designer’s mindset of curiosity, creativity, and collaboration to uncover the unmet needs of users to create innovative outcomes. It is a stuffy label for something that in practice is advanced common sense: empathy towards our fellow humans. 
How can design thinking help your business?
Executives are rewarded for solving problems with the latest information as quickly as possible. However, this assumes the correct question is being asked. By diverging, seeking new information before converging on a solution, we believe design thinking is the engine of innovation.
What does innovation really mean?

Innovations are an outcome, usually a product or service, that captures the value of an emerging technology’s value creation for a target set of users. However, an emphasis on technology, or feasibility, ignores the user’s needs, known as desirability.


For example, we don’t buy Bluetooth connectivity, we buy hands-free conversations. Thus, we believe design thinking is the methodology to capture user-centered needs and to create a pipeline of innovations that maintain an industry-leading position.

How can innovation help your business?

There is a strong link between innovation performance and the organization’s overall success. In today’s business landscape, disruption is a constant threat. A well-managed and successful innovation process is the only way to maintain your leadership position. Whether challenging the competition, or identifying a leapfrog opportunity to redefine an industry, design thinking is the tool for your organization to quickly respond to the rapidly changing business landscape.

Can innovation be a core strength of an organization?

Yes, and having a culture of innovation as a core competency gives your organization a sustainable competitive advantage. The key is teaching employees to practice empathy for their customers’ end users and then allowing them to creatively address the pain to create a gain. Design thinking allows for a sustained, well-maintained innovation funnel that will ensure the durability of your leadership position.


For example, Apple’s core competency is innovation. It introduced the iPod as an "innovative” way to listen to music and maintained that position with the iTunes store. Apple’s iPhone wasn’t the first smartphone, but by reframing music from albums to curated streams composed of individual songs, it leapfrogged far beyond the competition and redefined the word, “mobile.”

How does the design thinking innovation process work?

BIG uses the same methodology they teach at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, which consists of four phases:

Discovery: Getting to know your customers’ and their end users’ pains, gains, and jobs-to-be-done without offering solutions. The key is asking the right question, specifically that you’re addressing the human-centered need.

Insights: Looking for patterns in the data from the Discovery phase to uncover the “why behind the what,” that drives users to action.

Ideation: Building off user-centered Insights, we co-create solutions inspired by emerging industry, technological, and social trends plus the latest academic research.

Prototype & Experiment: Bringing the fruits of Ideation to life with low-cost, high-impact prototypes. We lead the testing of these prototypes for desirability with current customers and prospective users.

If successful, we move on to testing feasibility. If desirability is not met, we repeat the design thinking process informed by our earlier work.

How long does it take?

An average engagement takes twelve weeks. To fit your organization’s unique needs, the project can be customized with shorter “train the trainer” models or longer-term “innovation as a service” offerings.

What can you guarantee?

Our clients have received a deeper understanding of their customers and end users’ needs, which leads to prototypes of products and services that reinforce an existing leadership position and defend against disruption from competitors and startups alike.

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Unlock innovation & create positive change