Many GCC businesses are struggling during these tough economic times and are even missing an opportunity to grow, because they are not focusing sufficiently on Innovation Management says an expert in the UAE.
According to Engineer Osama Ghanim, Chief Executive Officer of Innovabia, a speaker at the Second Abu Dhabi Innovation Forum (Fairmont Bab Al Bahar, 24th-25th January 2011), many companies believe they are innovative â€“ particularly at the start up and/or early stages of growth. But they overlook the fact that innovation can apply to every aspect of their operations from business development to marketing and process enhancement to cost saving.
â€œRaising the awareness, knowledge and skill levels in creativity and innovation within an organisation, although important, must be accompanied with a system that manages innovation enabling long-term sustainability and competitiveness,â€ says Ghanim, whose company was the first dedicated innovation service company in the region.
â€œThe way innovation is being advocated, advertised and even mandated among many medium and large corporate organisations in the region is very promising. If raising the awareness is not combined with a system that manages innovation, the results will be negligible if not nil,â€ he warns. â€œIt is crucial for governments in the region to play a stronger role in cultivating innovation within the industrial sector by giving it greater credence along with entrepreneurship.â€
Innovabia created the Middle East regionâ€™s first Innovation Index in 2010, the results of which will be revealed at the Innovation Forum presented by Abu Dhabi University (ADU) and Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development.
â€œWe found that there is a lack of understanding of the role of innovation among SMEs and how it can impact their business,â€ he added.
Organised by Aim Events, the Events Management Division of ADU, the Second Abu Dhabi Innovation Forum is part of the Innovation Week taking place from 24th to 26th January 2011 (www.innovation-abudhabi.com) and includes the Abu Dhabi Innovators Fair and the Abu Dhabi Innovation Awards. It will feature new and innovative business concepts and ideas worldwide which can be inspiring and applicable to the region. During the forum, Ghanim will discuss how innovation can increase a companyâ€™s value.
â€œInnovation is vital for survival and a key factor in diversifying and improving the economy by finding solutions to new market developments,â€ he continued. â€œGovernments should either encourage or force initiatives to measure the level of innovation in organisations to provide a unified view and assessment with international standards.â€