Navy Innovation Campaign - Energizer Lightning Talk


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This presentation was delivered by Steve Rowe of the Navy Innovation Center, Navy Warfare Development Command, on May 7 as part of GovLoop's Career Energizer Event.

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  • The Innovation Campaign supports the CNO’s Sailing Directions. CNO has said that the Navy will:Innovate to: Use new technologies and operating concepts to sharpen our warfighting advantageEvolve and remain the preeminent maritime force. Reach & effectiveness of ships & aircraft will be greatly expanded through new and updated weapons, unmanned systems, sensors, & increased powerUnmanned systems will employ greater autonomy and be fully integrated with their manned counterpartsOur primary mission is warfighting. Efforts to improve capabilities, develop people, and structure our organizations should be grounded in this fundamental responsibility.NWDC has put intellectual energy into what we need to do to achieve innovation campaign strategic goals.
  • Navy Innovation Campaign - Energizer Lightning Talk

    1. 1. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDSteve RoweNavy Center for InnovationInnovation Campaign Division ChiefNavy Warfare Development Command07 May 2013Navy Innovation Campaign Overview
    2. 2. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDWhy is the NavyFocusing on Innovation?• The Challenge– Global proliferation of advanced technology is closingour advantage over potential adversaries– Reduced budgets mean many proposed solutions willbe unaffordable• Increasing the pace and scope of innovation willyield more, and potentially more affordable,solutions, allowing us to maintain our warfightingedge2An enhanced Navy culture of innovation can address these challenges
    3. 3. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDEasier Said than Done:Roadblocks and Resistance• Junior leaders perceive senior leadership asunreceptive to new, disruptive ideas• No time in workday remains for innovative tacticsdevelopment• Limited resources allocated for new ideas in fiscally-constrained environment• Lack of incentives exist to innovate• Policies not in synch with current techniques andtechnologies3
    4. 4. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDThe Innovation Campaign:Mission, Goals, Efforts• The mission: Improvewarfighting capabilities byreinvigorating andsustaining a Navy cultureof innovation• End State Goals:– More strongly embracesinnovation– Reap the benefits of newideas– Leverages new technologydevelopments• Lines of Effort: How weare trying to do it– Major Innovation CampaignEvents– Fleet (headquarters) andWaterfront Engagement– CNO Rapid Innovation Cell– Virtual Presence• Discussion and debate• Idea collection (harvesting),refinement, and voting4
    5. 5. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDMajor Events: What WeLearned…So FarMarch 2012Maritime Symposium• Tested physical /virtual hybridevent• Identified best practices andhistorical lessons• Led to development ofInnovator’s Guide• Ways to become morecreative• Conditions conducive toinnovation• Ways to move ideas throughcomplex organizations• Contacts and resourcesJune 2012Junior Leader Symposium• Senior advocacy needed to get anidea adopted• Must embrace the uniquestrengths of the MillennialGeneration• Navy technology often makes lifeharder, not easier• Innovation largely eclipsed byother duties• Junior leaders dissatisfied with thepersonnel systemOctober 2012Pacific Rim Symposium• Must move beyond major programs• Need compelling story and strategiccommunications approach• Policy is often greatest barrier• Periodically revisit “failed” ideas5February-March 2013Online Crowdsourcing• Objectives, tools and audiencesmust be aligned• Need menu of tools (with supportingpolicy)
    6. 6. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDFleet and WaterfrontEngagement• Develop partners at the “Fleet” (headquarters)and “Waterfront” operating force levels– Help understand requirements– Build stakeholder support for rapid innovation– Gather ideas and grow local (bottom up) solutions– Co-opt operators into testing innovative ideas6
    7. 7. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDCNO’s Rapid Innovation CellDisruptive Thinkers• Select junior leaders to developdisruptive technological and tacticalsolutions that can be rapidly fielded• Monthly virtual / live workshops• Small team (~ 12 junior officers)• Each member proposes and “owns”a project– Laser communications– Shipboard 3D Printing– “Madden” Navy7
    8. 8. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDWhat I’ve Learned• All levels are important– Senior leadership  advocacy and resources to turn ideas into capabilities– Middle management  foster ideas and test / adopt small scale innovations(or not)– Working level  closest to the problems, less constrained by currentparadigm• It takes time to find what works…for each purpose and audience– Still learning and adjusting 1 year into our innovation campaign• It takes a network– You’ll need expertise and support outside your own organization– “Big” ideas often come from combining different perspectives (Medici effect)8
    9. 9. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDNavy Innovation CampaignSummary• Top down (senior leadership) support• Defined goals with activities based onstrategy-to-tasks analysis• Collaborative – growing network of partners,stakeholders and advocates• Adjusting as we go (and learn)9The Navy practices innovation on a daily basis – but we can do a better job oftapping the potential collective creativity of our personnel. Innovation willbecome more important in the face of rapid change and financial constraints.
    10. 10. UNCLASSIFIEDUNCLASSIFIEDQuestions?Visit the Navy Center for Innovation us at:NWDC_NRFK_INNOVATIONS@navy.mil10R. Steven RoweInnovation Campaign Division Chief(757) 341-4309, DSN