Booking.com, Transavia and Tommy Hilfiger on innovating bottom-up

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by Suzanne Legtenberg

10 quotes of Booking.com, Transavia and Tommy Hilfiger on why bottom-up is the best way to innovate

Does your organisation have an innovation or R&D Department where ‘the magic is supposed to happen’? Did you appoint a bunch of smart people that are supposed to come up with the most brilliant ideas to innovate? Nothing wrong with that, but there might be something that you’re overlooking. On the 5th of October, 55 senior CSR, HR, Innovation, Sustainability and Marketing professionals discussed how companies can boost their innovation on Purposed Conference. The outcome might surprise you, because it doesn’t have anything to do with your Innovation or R&D Department…

The best suggestions for change and innovation come from employees. Employees of all levels within the company. Learn what Booking.com, Transavia, Tommy Hilfiger, Charlotte Extercatte and Machtelt Groothuis said regarding bottom-up innovation.

10 quotes on bottom-up innovation

1. Charlotte Extercatte, owner AmbassadorWise:

“Letting go of control to unlock potential seems like the way to go. Management is too often a burden to sustainable innovation. There is a certain fear of what might be coming out of the crowd. Learn to let go and trust that good things will come out of the bottom-up approach.”

2. Mattijs ten Brink, CEO Transavia:

“I agree on the huge power that employees have: you need their eyes and ears.”

3. Marianne Gybels, CSR Manager Booking.com:

“Creating space for people to think about big questions is really important. Give employees a few hours to work on things outside of the scope of their daily work. It’s amazing to see what they come up with when they feel they’ve got the space to explore.”

4. Mattijs ten Brink:

“As management, you need to put your money where your mouth is. Take the volunteering out of hobbyism. This illustrates the priority that management gives to it. And of course, the workload of employees is not diminished with the hours spent on doing good. That is not the point. The point is to illustrate the saying of the top that they can and should go for it.”

5. Charlotte Extercatte agrees on the support that is needed from the top:

“We often got the question ‘do we get time for that?’. But very often, it is not about time. Ask your people ‘what resources do you need to make it happen?'”

6. Marianne Gybels states:

“Initiating projects bottom-up works way better, because you know you have the buy-in, energy and support from your employees.”

7. Tommy Hilfiger, on the urgency of innovation:

“For us, Corporate Responsibility = business continuity. We look at how the world changes and question ourselves how to bring that into the business.”

8. Marianne Gybels explains how their employees come up with great initiatives:

“Our Booking Cares platform enables our employees across the world to start local projects. From here in Amsterdam, we may not always be aware of the most impactful potential projects in Brazil, for example, so we trust our employees, and support their judgement and local expertise.”

9. Charlotte Extercatte:

“Use all the potential of employees within the company to change your business model.”

10. Machtelt Groothuis, Co-Founder Social Impact Ventures:

“It doesn’t matter how mature your company is concerning CSR. It all starts by asking people the right questions”.

Your people will know ways to improve your operations and sustainability, regardless of company strategies on CSR or policies that are in place.

We thank all our guests and experts that made Purposed Conference a great success. Click here to see all photos of Purposed. Enjoy and stay tuned for more insights!

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