Blog article
See all stories »

An article relating to this blog post on Finextra:

Finextra launches Forum for Innovation in Financial Services

A new series of half-day events will bring together practitioners involved in the innovation process within financial services institutions to debate and share knowledge on the latest technologies and...

See article

Innovation: Killing bad puppies and old dogs

At last week’s Forum for Innovation in Financial Services, organised by Finextra, we had some excellent presentations from James Gardner at Lloyds TSB and Pol Navarro of Banco Sabadell giving insight into how these particular banks are approaching the challenge of managing a formal innovation programme. The subsequent panel discussion also involved Frios Manolas of Merrill Lynch, who bought a capital markets flavour to the topic, and Neil Hudspeth from the event's sponsor Metastorm.

James, and his soon-to-be-colleague Christophe Langlois were much quicker than me in blogging about the event, and provide some good coverage here and here respectively.

The subject of engaging the whole organisation in an innovation culture that promotes idea generation, and then evaluating and managing this pipeline, was one that drew more than a few questions from the audience.

One of the interesting themes for me that was revisited throughout the event was James’ introduction of the “drowning the puppy” concept. Before anyone calls the RSPCA, this refers to the benefits of being able to identify an unsuitable idea and kill it off as quickly as possible, so more resources can be allocated to carrying viable innovative ideas forward.

At the other end of the scale, was the truism that yesterday’s innovations are today’s legacy. And 80% of budgets are spent in maintaining this legacy. Obviously this has to be a consideration when planning a new project – how can you minimise the ongoing cost of supporting today’s innovation, and how can you build-in an exit plan for when the project is no longer driving competitive advantage? We also discussed how innovation programmes can help identify these business-as-usual practices, products or systems that could be gotten rid of -- targeting the “old dogs”, to carry on the canine theme, in order to free up more budget for innovative ideas that can deliver value to the business.

I’d like to thank all our speakers at the event, our sponsor Metastorm, and those in the audience, for such an interesting dialogue that touched on these and many other aspects of innovation in financial services.

We will hopefully be revisiting the topic with another event next year under the Innovation in Financial Services umbrella, perhaps drilling down into particular disruptive technologies or social changes that are impacting financial services. We have had some suggestions about making the format of any future event itself a bit more innovative than the regular presentation/panel approach (thanks to Jonathan Smart at Deutsche Bank), and are considering our options. Any further feedback or suggestions are most welcome.


Comments: (0)

Elton Cane
Blog group founder

Elton Cane

Digital product delivery

News Corp Australia

Member since

16 Feb 2007



Blog posts




This post is from a series of posts in the group:

Innovation in Financial Services

A discussion of trends in innovation management within financial institutions, and the key processes, technology and cultural shifts driving innovation.

See all

Now hiring