The three critical growth strategies for digital innovation leaders in 2023

by iacollaborative on 05.04.2023

2023 is the year that digital teams drive innovation and new business growth. By bringing together design and business expertise, these teams are helping CEOs unlock enormous value.

To deliver company growth that exceeds shareholder expectations in 2023, many CEOs will focus on new digital business models. These include strategies to innovate, improve insights, build stronger customer relationships, and unlock new revenue streams.

In this reading series, we explore three of the most effective ways that CEOs are leveraging human-centered design and business innovation, across industries and geographies. Over the course of three articles, we’ll describe each of these CEO initiatives in detail, including examples and tools that can be immediately applied within your organization.

The Three Pervasive CEO Initiatives for 2023

Form more direct relationships with 
consumers for increased loyalty and revenue

01 / Form more direct relationships with
consumers for increased loyalty and revenue

Go Direct ↗

Generate recurring revenue through new subscribed services

02 / Generate recurring revenue through new subscribed services

Build Recurring Revenue↗

Accelerate in-market innovation via live business prototyping

03 / Accelerate in-market innovation via live business prototyping

Drive Innovation ↗

Digital executives are essential to the success of all three of these initiatives. And by understanding them more deeply, you can elevate your influence and create positive change for customers, organizations, communities, and society.

CEOs Need CTO’s Design at the Front-End of Innovation

Certainly, all three CEO initiatives require skilled digital implementation. But at the front-end of innovation, digital teams are vital. In fact, across the entire company, teams of human-centered researchers, designers, and strategists are perhaps the best suited for the job. 

Human-centered researchers and designers are experts in defining new behaviors, finding unique insights and developing novel offerings. They’re also adept at prototyping potential solutions to collect predictive data early in the innovation process. 

Product and business strategists are skilled at defining viable growth priorities, business models, and capabilities, and calculating expected return on investment. 

Together, these skill sets empower you to prioritize, define, and realize a company’s most attractive growth options. These teams are equipped to create the knowledge CEOs need to make the four key decisions of growth: where to play, how to win, what to build, and when to fund.

“Growth strategies that combine both a traditional business framework and a design mind have the greatest chance of unlocking outsized value in increasingly complex business environments.”

— Dan Kraemer, Co-Founder + Co-CEO @ IA Collaborative

Succeeding Against the CEO Agenda

At IA Collaborative, we employ our Four Decisions of Growth™ methodology, a collection of actionable processes and outputs, that empower business leaders and digital executives when creating a portfolio of future options and strategic growth bets.

You’ll see reflections of this hybrid (design + business) approach in our guidance for each of the Three Pervasive CEO Initiatives for 2023.

The Four Decisions of Growth

To achieve near-term objectives and deliver better long-term returns, CEOs must continuously make four critical growth decisions. To make these decisions in a way that drives results, digital executives and their multi-disciplinary teams must bring business and design processes together.

If you’re interested in these topics, we’d like to have a conversation

The Takeaways

CTOs’ teams are vital at the front-end of innovation. Designers, as well as product and business strategists, are among the best suited for this effort within the entire company.

Converging the typically design-led or business-led approaches of these teams can unlock enormous value.


Initiative 1: Build More Direct Relationships

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