Diversity enhances value creation

Last week I wrote in my Strategy Blog ‘Creating more value in services‘, that more value can be created in services when ecosystem services are included. To achieve more value in the context of responsible long term investments or sustainability driven innovations, it means that more diverse knowledge is necessary. It has always been my conviction that in these complex challenges more value can be delivered by teams that have enough diversity. 

Related to diversity and the creation of value an interesting article came online last week (Reypens et al., 2016). This article also points out that more diversity is needed when it comes to value creation. It is interesting to notice that in a diverse team or network there does not have to be one single definition of value. For example stakeholders that participate to find new and innovative ways to create more value can participate for several reasons. They can participate because of the innovation outcomes and/or knowledge outcomes and/or relational outcomes.

To organize the value co-creation process in a diverse diverse team or network, such a process needs to be carefully organized. In the article Reypens et al. (2016) decribe three stages of value co-creation: (1) Coordination, where at first information is shared between stakeholders to stimulate synergies and prevent overlap of activities, (2) Consultation, during this phase an open dialogue is facilitated and (3) Compromise, where all stakeholders listen and reconcile each other’s points of view before making decisions.

There are also considerations to take into account when it comes to diversity in which the value co-creation process can succeed. Not enough diversity could lead to a tunnel vision and too much diversity can lead to coordination issues. These coordination issues can occur when there are too many different stakeholders, or when the objectives of the stakeholders are too diverse or when the stakeholders have too many cultural differences. 

My conclusion is that when it comes to responsible long term investment decisions or sustainability based innovations, it is important to work with enough diversity to create more value. 

Norbert Bol


Reypens C., Lievens A. & Blazevic V. (2016, in press, corrected proof). Leveraging value in multi-stakeholder innovation networks: A process framework for value co-creation and capture. Industrial Marketing Management.

Photo credit: Spiva Arts via Foter.com / CC BY

One thought on “Diversity enhances value creation

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