WVU Marketing Communications Today

What’s the Secret to Marketing Innovation?

November 3, 2022



Michael McCathren, innovation lead at Chick-Fil-A, and author of a new book: 6Ps of Essential Innovation, is an expert on the “innovation organization.” In this episode, he shared with us specifics about how marketing departments can develop the capabilities and the culture needed to implement new ideas. Listen in to learn how marketing leaders should adopt an innovation mindset, to make new ideas welcome, and to stimulate “idea equity” in their companies. Michael explains why an innovation organization is NOT the same as an innovative organization, and why it matters. His secret weapon for innovation: Stay close to your customers and let them speak for themselves.

Key Takeaways/Three Little Piggies

  • Companies often try to incorporate new capabilities without building a culture that is able to accept them.
  • Marketing leaders can create an innovative culture by asking questions instead of making statements.
  • The voice of the customer can be the “rocket fuel” to drive growth through innovation.

About our Guest:

Michael McCathren, best-selling author of 6 Ps of Essential Innovation, is a strategic innovation expert who has spent more than 30 years leading efforts across operations, supply chain, finance, strategic planning, and marketing. Currently, he oversees Enterprise Innovation in the Innovation & New Ventures group at Chick-fil-A where he and his team are responsible for helping the organization transform its ideas into business value.

A curious, creative problem solver by nature, Michael approaches life with an innovation mindset and dedicates time to fostering that potential in others. Outside his work with Chick-fil-A, he is an adjunct professor of Innovation Management for the Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia.

Michael holds a Master of Science in Innovation from Northeastern University. He's deeply devoted to his faith and family and enjoys seeing the world on his motorcycle or camping with his wife, Dena.

WVU Marketing Communications Today: Horizons is presented by the West Virginia University Reed College of Media, which offers renowned online master’s degree programs in Marketing Communications.

West Virginia University Marketing Communications 

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