Simone Ahuja: Implementing frugal innovation initiatives
Dr. Simone Ahuja has served Fortune 1000s across sectors. She has served as a consultant to the Centre for India & Global Business at Judge Business School, University of Cambridge, and as an associate Fellow at the Asia Society in New York City. She provides advisory services, keynotes and interactive innovation and agility labs to firms including PepsiCo, Procter and Gamble, Target Corp, 3M, Medtronic, the World Economic Forum, MIT, and Harvard University.
Blood Orange was founded by Dr. Simone Ahuja in 2004 as emerging markets like India and China were becoming broadly recognized for their economic growth and growing middle classes. Rooted in ethnographic research, Simone began studying how individuals and companies in emerging markets are able to solve pressing problems in spite of even severe resource constraints.
This research became the foundation for the international bestselling book she co-authored, Jugaad Innovation: Think Frugal, Be Flexible, Generate Breakthrough Growth. A groundbreaking book, Jugaad Innovation shows leaders everywhere why the time is right for jugaad to emerge as a powerful business tool in the West—and how to bring the jugaadmindset and practices to their organizations. The Economist called it the “most comprehensive book yet” on the subject of frugal innovation.
In the video presentation, Simone speaks to innovation as a major directive at corporations worldwide, and how we’re able to drive innovation, growth, and agility as the global business landscape becomes increasingly unpredictable and diverse.
Global corporations can no longer just rely on the old formula that sustained innovation and growth for decades: a mix of top-down strategies, expensive R&D projects and rigid, highly structured innovation processes. Jugaad Innovation argues that the world’s leading companies must look to places like India, China, and Africa for a new, bottom-up approach to fast, frugal and flexible innovation.
Building on their deep experience of innovation practices with companies in the US and around the world, the authors articulate how jugaad, a Hindi word meaning an improvised solution born from ingenuity and resourcefulness, is leading to dramatic growth in both emerging and emerged markets —and how leading companies can adopt jugaad to succeed in our hypercompetitive world. Delving into the mindset of jugaad innovators, the authors discuss the six underlying principles.
To show these principles in action, the authors share previously untold stories of resourceful jugaad entrepreneurs and innovators in emerging markets. The authors also describe how forward-thinking global firms like 3M, Apple, Best Buy, Facebook, GE, Google, IBM, and PepsiCo are already applying these principles of jugaad to innovate faster, cheaper and better. From Procter & Gamble’s reinvention of its core business model to profitably serve economically marginalized American consumers to Renault-Nissan’s focus on designing cars that cost less but deliver more value, the Western firms profiled in the book show how you can win by practicing jugaad.
Dr. Ahuja presented at Global Matters, a speaker series designed to enrich global business acumen. The event features speakers at the forefront of global business who share their expertise in emerging issues in international business and management. The series is a platform for business, government, media and academic professionals engaged in global business to create and develop a valuable network.