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What Is an Innovation Manager and How to Become One

What Does an Innovation Manager Do?

Innovation managers design processes or help implement new technologies that improve operations at a company or aids development of new products or services. Specific job duties vary, depending on the company and industry. But all innovation managers must have several years of experience in their particular industry and have a history of cultivating ideas from inception through production or implementation. Innovation managers usually research market trends and facilitate brainstorming sessions within their company. They can recognize good opportunities and turn them into profitable products or creative solutions for their company.

How to Become an Innovation Manager

Innovation management is a relatively new category of work, so the requirements to become an innovation manager vary widely. Some innovation managers begin as designers or developers who demonstrate an ability to come up with creative and successful new ideas. Others may be skilled at helping a company navigate the complexities of developing new ideas. Typically, you need a bachelor’s or graduate degree in a related field and several years of industry experience to acquire an innovation manager position.

What Skills Do Successful Innovation Managers Have?

Successful innovation managers have a variety of skills and characteristics. They are creative and able to recognize and draw out the creativity of others. You need to be open to change and seek to disrupt standard operating procedures to achieve the implementation of your organizational goals. Developing a coherent long-term strategy that fosters innovation over many years is vital to sustain the success of an innovation manager. Excellent market research and analytical skills are also important.