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Capturing the Value of Synchronized Innovation

by Jason Davis
published in MIT Sloan Management Review, 2013
Ref SMR54416

Capturing the Value of Synchronized Innovation Sony and Microsoft, leading manufacturers of video games consoles, often try to coordinate product releases with game manufacturers such as Electronic Arts. Understanding the benefits of such synchronized activity, and how to achieve it, can be extremely helpful, argues the author, especially in technology-intensive industries.

How can synchrony be put to work and used to advantage? The author sets out a useful five-step guide to help move the process forward, explaining how to identify and assess opportunities, liaise with potential partners, and develop mutually advantageous project plans.

The author notes that synchronization within industry networks can provide companies with significant mutual benefits. It’s therefore essential for managers where high interdependence is the norm to gain a better understanding of it and the potential pitfalls involved.

The article also explores the importance of clear communication with mid-level managers who will be charged with implementing synchronized projects and working closely with partner companies. As many projects last for months and even years, a breakdown in communications could have serious and costly implications. 

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About the authors

Jason Davis is an Associate Professor of Technological Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Strategy at the MIT Sloan School of Management where he teaches courses on the strategic management of innovation and entrepreneurship. Jason's research focuses on how organisations develop technological innovations and use them to compete in dynamic markets.

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