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The Importance of Service Research to Our Industry


April 1, 2015 - 2 Comments

If you do not know the International Society of Service Innovation Professionals or ISSP, I encourage you to do so.

ISSIP is an amazing organization with very active Cisco engagement; and yes Cisco is a co-founder of ISSIP.

ISSIP defines service “as the application of knowledge for the benefit of others, and service science as the study of diverse, interconnected, complex “human-centered value co-creation systems in business and in society.”

With wonderful colleagues in private industry and academia service science coupled with innovation is core to a service strategy. There are indeed implications to talent such as the emphasis on “T-Shapes” as articulated by Dr. Jim Spohrer at IBM Research e.g visualizing breath and depth across disciplines.

Why T-Shaped Skills are Pivotal for the 21st Century?

To frame up what should a culture of innovation look like over the next 5-10 years amidst tremendous change?

In the world of “real time”, the relationship between supplier and customer is blurring.

This world is now defined by so-called co-innovation where each party is equally accountable; the supplier more so when one frames the discussion around achieving business outcomes.

Much of these principles have been described in the book, Consumption Economics, The New Rules of Tech written by J.B. Wood et al where the linear process of defining requirements; creating complexity and monetizing complexity is no longer valid.

Further, development is moving from agile operations to true development operations requiring a very close customer-supplier relationship, in it sum equates to a co-innovation partnership.  

The development paradigm is changing now as well from one where traditional “waterfall” design requires painstaking design and planning, to a more agile one.

Furthermore, many organizations are realizing that the real value in a development organization is in the organization’s ability to quickly iterate on product development – which has changed the model from the value being in how an organization works rather than necessarily on what it builds.

As the discussion moves from Cloud Computing, SDx (Software Defined Internet Exchange), OpenX, NFV (Network Functions Virtualization), Internet of Things,Big Data, Analytics, Cybersecurity and so on; skills, required to adapt to such changes MUST be T-Shaped in nature.

Being deep in 1-2 areas, and very able to see the bigger picture in articulating outcomes-implications to academia, to industry will be pivotal in the 21st Century and beyond.

I am humbled by the outstanding ISSIP membership – innovation and service science at its best!

Want to know more about ISSP? Become a member!

Have questions or comments? Tweet us @CiscoSP360



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2 Comments

  1. Great info and write-up Monique, as usual! Your characteristically timely article poked fragments of my decaying memory banks about a paper I had come across couple of years back: “Structure and Dynamics of a “T-Shaped” Knowledge" by Barile, Franco, et. al. BTW: I followed your lead and went and got registered at ISSIP :-) Thank you! Respects and best regards santanu (cannot log onto cisco blogs with older account- not sure why:-)

    • Dear Santanu Thank you so very much for your omments. Now that you registered for ISSIP: You have every opportunity to be ACTIVE! Looking forward to your contributions. Warm regards Monique