This Army Colonel Is Showing Large Enterprises How To Innovate Like Lean Startups


U.S. Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Demetrius Lester

Originally Published on This Site.

By Greg Satell

Since the turn of the century, the US Military has been continually disrupted. Traditionally it was designed to fight conventional wars against great adversaries. Yet since 9/11 it has found itself fighting networks of loosely connected small groups that are able to continually evolve their tactics. That’s a very different kind of battle.

It’s a situation that most executives at major companies will recognize. Today, as the tempo and pace of technological change seems to be ever-increasing, a competitive threat can come from anywhere. As you ponder the competitive landscape, somebody at a kitchen table somewhere may be getting ready to eat your lunch.

Colonel Pete Newell is at the nexus of both worlds. As Director of the Rapid Equipping Force, he transformed how the Army was able to collaborate with external resources and reduce development time from years to months. He then helped develop the highly acclaimed Hacking 4 Defense program. Now, he’s bringing his innovation program to private industry.




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