Co-creator As Future Skills & Sub-skills to Become Good At It

Based on LinkedIn research of the future jobs, here’s the top 5 skills needed in 2019.

Here’s from World Economic Forum (WEF) research as reported in WEF Future of Jobs Report 2018 regarding expected reskilling across companies. You can download the full report here.

One of the skills that will useful to teach, demonstrate and acquire by future employees and professionals are co-creation skills. From LinkedIn above you could see it being the third important skills. So, what is co-creation skills? What is a co-creator? What are sub-skills needed to be good at it?

Co-creation in today’s business context is about working by collaborating with others. We define co-creation as the collaborative development of new value (concepts, solutions, products and services) together with experts and/or stakeholders (such as customers, suppliers etc.). Co-creation is a form of collaborative innovation: ideas are shared and improved together, rather than kept to oneself.

We use to think co-creation and collaboration is only being done internally with our office collagues and co-workers. However, co-creation now is being done including with the customers. Companies should understand their customers’ desired experience and use that knowledge to work backwards to define company processes and culture including use of technology to improve customers’ experience.

“Co-creation is joint creation of value by the company and the customer; allowing the customer to co-construct the service experience to suit their context.”

Prahalad and Rawaswamy 2004, “Co‐creating unique value with customers”

“Co-creation is a purposeful action of partnering with strategic customers, partners or employees to ideate, problem solve, improve performance, or create a new product, service or business.”

Christine Crandell

Here are some examples of customers co-creation products and services:

  1. Self check out service – it used to be checking out from hotel you stay will take long time. Some hotels found that experience is dreading the guests and impacting their future stay in the hotel. After listening and empathizing with the guests, they offered self check out service. You could see this happening at our the bank with ATMs – you no longer have to go the counter.
  2. Counselling sessions for long term patients – healthcare is a tricky business. The patient is on constant pain especially after surgery and no likes to be in pain for a long period. For long stay patient the hospitals found out the patients become bored, hence they need someone to talk to or they become emotionally disturbed. Some hospitals offered counselling sessions based on this insights.

The question is, how could co-creation skills become an individual skills development? Looking at lightning speed of change happening around us today, there’s a dire need for the future employees and executives including entrepreneurs to acquire co-creation skills in order to ensure new value can be created out of the deep interaction with multi-stakeholders.

Here are some of the sub-skills that are useful and helpful for you to become competent and skillful at being a co-creator in your next project:

  1. Project Manager – project managers understand “start-end” will bring value. They are also good at breaking down the tasks and building the right team to achieve goals.
  2. Understand creative process – the person can lea brainstorming and ideation sessions to milk creative juice from team members and challenge them to achieve greater height.
  3. Politically sensitive – decision making involves power play with the stakeholders. Knowing how to unite all these differences among them will unleash untapped value to the project. It is useless to think “Me, myself and I”. The world is a big playing field.
  4. Know about concept development – a good concept usually easy to communicate, clear and succintly understood by general public. If you can’t explain it in simple language, chances are the concept is still vague.
  5. Understand the need of research – it is impossible to know everything by heart. One must do research and able to compile enough context to build business case on the concept or project.
  6. Networker – it is know what you know, it is who you know and whether the people of you target group knows you or not. Sometimes you have to be in the public for a while to get acquainted. Be enthusiastic with networking or get someone to do it for you .
  7. Does not give up easily – it could be tiring and exhaustive coordination sometimes, hence you are someone that are able to envision something greater than what it seems. Always get in touch with your team and find out ways to inspire them as well.
  8. Tech savvy – knowing simple productivity tech tools will save a lot of time and make you more efficient. Use of mobile tools, video editors and blogging/social media could help you become better co-creator.

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