Key takeaways

  • Start-up bootcamps provide a fantastic opportunity to generate creative new ideas and innovations.
  • These activities help to leverage the diverse skills within your organisation to break dominant logic.
  • Bootcamps are a powerful enabler for a strong employee value proposition, by getting team members involved and engaged in the strategic development of the organisation.

As we have re-engineered our offering to support organisations to rapidly drive innovation into their businesses, we are also seeking to do this within our own business.

We recently worked with a group of PwC graduates in order to facilitate and develop agile consulting skills through a newly defined challenge – the 90 minute startup. The key objective of this idea jam is to infuse the new world of digital innovation and agile consulting into our next wave of consultants.

The 90 minute startup

The task

Teams consisting of three to four consultants, had the the challenge of developing a Facebook application that would improve the way we do business. Guiding the session was Anthony Mittlemark, Director with PwC digital services, who provided guidance about the tangible value of the developing ideas and innovations.

The first 60 minutes of the session, facilitated by digital business specialists, was designated to ideation with the aim sof scoping the problem, designing the solution and considering the go-to-market strategy.

The final 30 minutes of the session, allowed each team to pitch their ideas to three judges, who considered the viability of the business idea and the potential economic and social benefits delivered by the solution.

For the winning team – potentially sharing in the spoils of creating a new business opportunity!

The outcome

The buzz in the room was electric, and from the get-go, the room was was a-buzz with idea generation, critical thinking and options analysis.

Check-in one was used to ensure teams had a clearly defined business problem they were trying to solve.  Anthony held back no punches as he critiqued ideas ranging from alumni network engagement to leveraging the power of the crowd to allocate funding for social causes (the PwC Foundation initiative).

Check-in two was used to ensure teams were developing sound ideas.  Anthony challenged each team on:

  • Whether they had considered the market size?
  • Whether their ideas were commercial?

At the completion of the 90 minutes each team gave a two minute pitch.  The quality was outstanding, with each team espousing a business opportunity and a valid social media solution. The quality was so good, the judges went away to discuss the options over a coffee (or two).

The winner?

Mentor Me PwC – a Facebook application that targets the next wave of business talent (15-24 year olds) to tap into their business ideas and use the power of PwC to help them develop business ideas, crowd source new digital business opportunities, and provide seed funding for young and upcoming entrepreneurs.  A sensational idea aligned to our employee value proposition and foster emerging business leaders.

Learnings and benefits

  • A rapid approach to capture new, innovative ideas
  • An opportunity for employees to openly articulate and engage on their insights
  • Helps to leverage the diverse skills within your organisation to break dominant logic
  • A powerful enabler for a strong employee value proposition, by getting them involved and engaged in the strategic development of the organisation.

Start-up bootcamps are fantastic opportunities to generate creative new ideas and galvanise teams.  The process is fun, challenging and thought provoking.  From a personal perspective, I was pleasantly surprised at the diversity of thinking demonstrated by a group of graduates.  Everyone had something to contribute, and that is the beauty of these workshops: the ultimate co-creation of new, innovative ideas!


This post was first published on the New Digital Economy blog.

Contributor

John Riccio

John is PwC Australia’s Design & Deploy, Experience Consulting partner.

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