David Robertson

2017 BAI Beacon Featured Speaker David RobertsonBest-Selling Author; Senior Lecturer, MIT Sloan School of Management; Professor of Practice, The Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania

Light-Up Breakfast: Innovation - Going Small to Win Big

Many times, organizations are focused on the next big thing – THE innovation that will disrupt or change how business gets done. This is usually a high risk, long term and costly approach to innovation. But, there’s a different school of thought that has been leveraged by companies inside financial services, such as ING Direct, and outside the industry, like LEGO, that drives a clear path to lower-risk, incremental and impactful innovation. Companies such as these, have developed portfolios of tightly coordinated, complementary innovations. Individually, each innovation is low risk and (often) low cost. But if done well, they can add up to a significant and sustainable competitive advantage.

Helping you to harness that competitive opportunity, is David Robertson. David is a best-selling author and Professor of Practice at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, where he teaches Innovation and Product Development for undergraduate, MBA and executive education programs. He also hosts Innovation Navigation, a highly popular Wharton Business School radio program that focuses on ways managers can boost innovation within their organizations. In addition, David has recently released a new book on innovation, The Power of Little Ideas, which outlines the changes leaders need to make internally to foster a low-risk, high-reward strategy for practical innovation.

Join David as he shares his insights into this powerful strategy of incremental innovation, including practical information on the techniques and disciplines that financial services organizations can adopt to boost their innovation success.

About David

David Robertson has devoted his working life to innovation—he’s been a student, teacher, and practitioner of the art of how leading companies practice genuine change for his entire career. As the host of the Wharton podcast Innovation Navigation (available on iTunes and Sirius XFM), he interviews leaders from around the world about creativity in business—companies that offer space to be creative, but direction to deliver.

In his new co-authored book The Power of Little Ideas, Robertson argues for a ‘third way’ between slow, incremental change and radical disruption—a low-risk, high-reward strategy that calls for complementary innovations around a core product or service. Little Ideas is powerful, practical, cogent and necessary—and Robertson translates this transformative book into refreshingly useful sessions.

As a Professor of Practice at the Wharton School, Robertson taught Innovation and Product Development in the undergraduate, MBA, and executive education programs. From 2002 through 2010, Robertson was the LEGO Professor of Innovation and Technology Management at Switzerland’s Institute for Management Development (IMD), which received the No. 1 worldwide ranking by The Financial Times for its executive education programs. At IMD, he was Program Director for IMD’s largest program, the Program for Executive Development, and co-Director of the Making Business Sense of IT program, a joint program between IMD and MIT Sloan.

Robertson also serves as a consultant to companies on innovation and technology management issues. He worked as a consultant for McKinsey & Company for five years and an executive at four enterprise software companies. He received his PhD from the MIT Sloan School in 1990.