Nine out of 10 Fortune 500 companies in 1955 disappeared from the list by 2016. The average tenure of a Fortune 500 company decreased from 33 years in 1965 to 18 years in 2012—and it’s forecasted to shrink to 14 years by 2026. The accelerating rate of technology development and disruptive innovation are the key drivers of this trend.

Itron has always been an innovator in the utility industry, but I saw an opportunity for disruptive innovation. In 2014, I thought it was time to introduce a new approach, which we now call Itron Idea Labs.

Read the full story about how I formed Idea Labs to embrace industry-leading, disruptive innovation in my new book Innovation for Survival. In the book, I explain the successes and failures of projects at Idea labs and the importance of disruptive innovation to deliver breakthrough products to customers.

I’ve worked with a variety of leading technology companies including Google, Edico Genome, Walt Disney and Paul Allen’s innovation incubator, Interval Research. These experiences helped me understand the benefits of an entrepreneurial approach to innovation.

In the book, I explain how Idea Labs was able to replicate startup methodologies within an established company. I present the strategy that we developed at Itron Idea Labs through lessons learned from both failures and successes. The book describes our process of pitching an idea, developing products and finding the right way to structure a team of innovators. The book is not only a story about a successful experiment, it is also a guide for how to pursue disruptive innovation and fail fast.

The purpose of this book is to provide a practical guide to building an innovation lab in a large corporation. We all learned a lot and I believe we cracked the nut of how to build a successful innovation lab in a large corporation. This story is not finished, as we continue pushing forward to get into even more exciting times.

If you are interested in the journey of innovation, purchase Innovation for Survival on Amazon today.

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Roberto Aiello
Managing Director, Itron Idea Labs - Itron Idea Labs
Dr. Roberto Aiello is the managing director of the Itron Idea Labs and responsible for new business innovation at Itron, including Internet of Things.

His previous experience includes managing wireless research at Interval Research, Paul Allen's technology incubator and technology transfer at Disney Research. He is an advisor to Google Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) and is a Lean Startup expert who serves as a mentor at the Cleantech Open and Startup Weekend.

Dr. Aiello also founded two venture-funded, wireless semiconductor companies and one web/mobile startup. Dr. Aiello worked as a physicist at Stanford Linear Accelerator Center and Superconducting Super Collider.