(* Coming soon to a cinnamon near you)
Back in the early days of the new millennium, when anything and everything seemed possible, co-creation was but one of a host of ideas all poised on the launch pad.
The notion that suppliers and consumers could come together to shape the products of the future is what led ultimately, for better or worse, to what we now call social media.
But collaboration can take many forms and collaborative creativity these days is as likely to refer to businesses working together to be better businesses as to enable them to create exceptional products.
In particular, a major hurdle is cleared when B2B service providers opt to shift from front- to back-end charging.
Suppose, for example, you do spade hire and as a geolocation specialist, I’ve got a pretty good idea where the treasure’s buried. Do you still insist on your usual up-front hire charge, even though that will clearly eat into my calculation budget and may jeopardise the entire project?
Or do we simply agree to divi up the treasure and start digging? Even if we draw a blank, isn’t it better that we should try anyway?
Creative solutions like this may seem obvious, yet every day great projects get held back precisely because up-frontism takes precedence over longer-term potential. The Opportunity Gap, in other words.
Yet it’s a divide that with properly managed profit-shared and risk-balanced working arrangements can be bridged.
It isn’t trivial. But it is worth it. Collaborative creativity – someday maybe all businesses will work this way.
Until then, well, there’s us. Or as we like to say…
Welcome to the future.