Executive Education

Making Innovation Core Business

Making Innovation Core Business

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The traditional approaches to managing change, uncertainty and volatility in the business environment have been, by and large, unable to meet the critical challenges facing managers and organisations seeking sustainable performance. 

On the one hand, your current business model calls for stability and continuity; it draws on and builds from an organisation’s past, aiming to increase efficiency and profitability. Innovation, however, is concerned with change and adaptability; encouraging creativity and risk-taking, and tapping into new, untested markets and opportunities. How can organisations deal with such contradictory and complex forces?

This course identifies ways to accommodate the tensions that accompany a commitment to innovation through both exploitation (‘tight’ structures, control, continuity, stability, conventional reporting and performance measures) and exploration (‘loose’ structures, flexibility, creativity, collaboration, experimentation, evolving) - what we refer to as ‘Exploit-Explore Concurrency’ or E2.

We will begin our exploration of  E2  by examining key meta-drivers of  business at a global scale, then take a look at national level economic factors that may obstruct or provide opportunity to businesses, and finally drill down  to an analysis of the localised challenges in managing E2 to achieve better, more  sustainable performance. You will be exposed to both theory and practice, based on extensive research, and encouraged to engage with tools that can assist in increasing an individual’s and organisation’s ability to achieve ‘Exploit-Explore Concurrency’.


  • Awareness of new and novel approaches to business development
  • Ability to embrace uncertainty and seek opportunity where others see adversity
  • Understand  how to drive efficiencies in current business practices while facilitating a mindset that sees innovation as not just a right but a responsibility
  • Ability to implement cost effective practices that have the potential to drive both personal and organisational innovation capability 

Course presenter: Associate Professor David Gilbert

David Gilbert is Associate Professor, Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Deputy Head, Industry Engagement,  in the College of Business, RMIT University.  He developed and leads a ground-breaking collaboration with business called the Innovation Fastrack Program that engages tools such as co-design and rapid prototyping in taking nascent ideas to commercial realities. Prior to joining academia, David enjoyed an extensive career in international business holding positions at the highest levels including CEO, President and Partner and has also started and owned over a dozen businesses operating in various countries including Japan, USA, Singapore, Korea and China.