Shanzhai Innovation

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Can a copy be more truthful to an idea than its initial rendition?

Can a copy be more truthful to an idea than its initial rendition?

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  • 1. Shanzhai Innovationby Rainer Wessler, Executive Creative Director
  • 2. frog drives innovation for the connected world
  • 3. frog drives innovation for the connected world
  • 4. frog drives innovation for the connected world
  • 5. Innovation
  • 6. InnovationIntent RenditionIdeation ExecutionCreativity Craftsmanship
  • 7. The Shanzhai phenomenon.
  • 8. Shanzhai marks a temporary,not the ultimate state of anorganization’s evolution.
  • 9. Hiroshige van Gogh (original) (copy)
  • 10. Traditionally, copy and repetition are key ingredients to Chineseeducation and training programs and do not demonstrate a lack of ideasor originality, but a statement of respect. Frequent iteration andincremental improvement are seen as a necessity to achieve perfection.
  • 11. Only after acquiring the basic skills of a trade, creativity is encouraged as adirection for further growth. In a country that values respect and continuitybetween generations as much as China does, can we look at Shanzai as astep, but not the end state in an organization’s evolution?
  • 12. An ecosystem that not only delivers truthful copies of productsbut also creates novel feature and brand permutations.
  • 13. Shanzhai products help toproject status and upwardsocial mobility.
  • 14. Miàn Zi面子
  • 15. In a country socio-economically as divers as China, putting your best faceforward drives many behaviors and aspirations. Shanzhai products can playan important role by providing the insignia to project achievement or upwardsocial mobility.
  • 16. In a country socio-economically as divers as China, putting your best faceforward drives many behaviors and aspirations. Shanzhai products can playan important role by providing the insignia to project achievement or upwardsocial mobility.
  • 17. Shanzhai products can actually play in favor of the established brands. Ilearned that sometimes customers might only become aware of ‘the realthing’ through the purchase of an equivalent Shanzhai product - especially inlow tier cities where western brands often lack branch presence.
  • 18. Shanzhai are among the trulycustomer centric businessesin China.
  • 19. This is not a basket of eggs.It’s the tip of an iceberg.
  • 20. For most people shanzhai - or imitation goods, have a derogative association.However, one of the motivations for going Shanzhai is to avoid the difficultregulations the Chinese government has established to become an officialmanufacturer.
  • 21. The Shanzhai ecosystem that can crank out products in one-tenthof the time, unencumbered by moral, legal or institutional barriers,can be seen as more customer-centered and responsive than their legallyestablished competitors in China - an opportunity, rather than a threat?
  • 22. Given their fast product-to-market cycles and their non-commitment toregulations and business alliances Shanzai manufacturers can be seenas more customer-centered and responsive than their legally establishedcompetitors in China.
  • 23. Shanzhai redefines therelationship between theinventor and the maker.
  • 24. ... an ancient form of Google Wave, where ideas invite conversations - andsometimes imitation ...
  • 25. In post-renaissance western cultures the inventor often enjoys higherappreciation than the craftspeople who make it happen.
  • 26. Can a copy be more truthful to the actual idea than it’s initial rendition?
  • 27. Yes it can :-)
  • 28. Only in arts and pop culture we see symbiotic relationships between theinitiator of an idea and the ones who are the excelling in bringing it to life.(think Beethoven & Glenn Gould)
  • 29. Only in arts and pop culture we see symbiotic relationships between theinitiator of an idea and the ones who are the excelling in bringing it to life.(think electronic music / sample and remix culture)
  • 30. Shanzhai innovation in the‘connected world’ ...
  • 31. One open briefing, three independent teams = one idea?
  • 32. Do ideas converge in the connected world?
  • 33. Has innovation turned into a community effort, a public sport?
  • 34. A community of designers volunteering their ideas to brands they admire.
  • 35. What can we learn fromShanzhai companies?
  • 36. Have the headand the handwork together.
  • 37. Accept what youdon’t know. Jumpin, get dirty.
  • 38. Know what you areselling. Love yourproduct!
  • 39. Increase TTMthrough incrementalinnovation?
  • 40. Understand yourcustomers andtheir needs.
  • 41. Co-createwith yourcustomers.
  • 42. Be easy to dealwith. Be a goodpartner.
  • 43. Stop obsessingwith protectingyour ideas?
  • 44. Hire good people.People whonetwork.
  • 45. Hire good people.People whonetwork.People who lovewhat they make.