Adidas is a clothing, shoes, and accessories company. It is one of the biggest sportswear companies in the world that operates on a multinational level. The headquarters of the company is in Germany and it’s a second in the sports industry to Nike. Adidas also has the Reebok Company under its banner as well as others. Adidas Company launched in 1924 and the founder of the company was Adolf Dassler whose eventually his brother joined. Adidas used to be a show factor in which running shoes were the main product for various events of athleticism. Dassler managed to have his shoes as a part of the Summer Olympics in 1936 for Jesse Owens the sprinter. Eventually, brothers disband where Rudolf initiated Puma company while Adolf initiated Adidas. Currently, Adidas has little impact or presence at the Olympics other than selling apparel for the event to some athletes and the crowd.
The Olympics is always raising the stakes through innovation whether its providing spectators with better viewing options or offering high-end clothing for people and athletes. Major sports apparel companies like Adidas often sponsor athletes and offer a myriad of different clothing options, these options keep improving regularly based on innovation. The report will analyze Adidas and its innovation model while providing a new innovative product for the Winter Olympics, this report scrutinizes this innovation and idea based on multiple theories and frameworks.
The Organization Culture model by Schein mentions how each company culture entails three different levels to it. One of the layers is known as the artifacts and symbols, which is the surface of the organization.
Essentially, the artifacts are the ones that are apparent such as the Adidas brand or logo. These artifacts are presented to the consumers and employees to give the identity of the company. Going beyond the apparent ones with artifacts, there are the espoused values; these are the organizational standards and beliefs which are implemented. They are the internal guiding principles by which companies like Adidas run through it. Finally, the assumptions work on a subconscious level; these are deep and intrinsic in an organization that isn’t easily understood. Schein (1983) mentions that these are hard to gauge openly as they are innate the model above is known as Tidd and Bessant’s (2007) Innovation Process Model. The model has a clear sequence or process by which innovation happens. To start, there is the opportunity search. The idea is to find opportunities in terms of developing innovation. After the opportunities are found, then the goal is to pursue ideas. This is the natural next step by which there is a focus on trying to implement the best choices. The third step involves the implementation of innovation. It is not enough to simply have good ideas but it refers to being able to practically implement the ideas with the limited time and resources available. The final part of the process is to gather the benefits from the innovation for the users.
To develop innovation, Adidas has managed to develop a very specific culture; this is a culture of empowerment. Adidas empowers its employees in various aspects. One aspect is that the employees are free to communicate and provide new ideas as they acquire them. Another aspect of empowerment is that Adidas supports the employees in different ways which entail providing resources, offering ways to learn more, etc. The objective is to give employees a platform to thrive based on innovation. Adidas doesn’t shut employees down but gives them a platform to put forth their goods ideas and provide the resources needed to implement them. This follows the innovation process model perfectly as the empowerment culture has the opportunity to search with open communication, the pursuit of ideas and implementation by providing resources and knowledge, and then acquiring the benefits so that the company grows.
The idea began with thinking about solving problems. Rather than simply providing something new, the process entailed thinking of the problems and come up with solution but one problem that stuck in mind was the winter Olympics and how to manage them.
Adidas has been a very competitive company from the start that from making handmade sports shoes to now operating worldwide with billions of dollars in revenue and it has a strong place in the market and plan to keep innovating. For any innovation, the Winter Olympics is an ideal platform to show Adidas’s ability and its products. For this, it should focus on their strengths which is apparel. However, they should expand on their apparel products by offering new innovative offerings with hi-tech embedded in it.
The innovation concept is to introduce heating jackets. The heating jackets are wireless and provide spectators and athletes with temperature control. As everyone has a different comfortable temperature during the winter Olympics, the heating jacket can adjust as necessary to the consumer. Furthermore, the jacket can also be pre-warmed so people don’t have to endure the cold before they put it on. It is an innovative new concept to make the winter Olympics a very convenient event for enjoyment.
Additionally, the jacket also has Fitbit installed which are activity trackers; this will measure various activities like heartbeat and more to help consumers and athletes. Athletes in particular will be interested in this aspect as it will keep them warm and give them a good idea of what is about to happen.
The jacket is a convenient and stylish product with the self-heating technology done wirelessly. With Fitbit and comfort, it is a simple product to use while providing a high level of utility to the consumers and athletes. The winter Olympics in particular can be difficult to handle as it can be dangerous for many people. To increase interest and performance, this product is highly relevant for the event and to help Adidas create a future line-up of such quality products.
The jacket has several parts which are all of the features that it has from the heating to the Fitbit analytics. This is an innovation by Adidas that doesn’t currently offer; the company has the resources to do this easily as they are one of the biggest and most profitable sports apparel companies in the market. The technology may be expensive but it is a relevant innovation that falls in-line with what the company offers already.
The heating jacket adds technology to sports and apparel. Over time, there have been developments in sporting technology whether it’s material or its ways to track activity (Guard, 2016). Technology can provide new ways by how sports apparel is used (Sage, 2015). As technology improves, it is possible to bring together new possibilities like the heating jacket.
This is just one phase or part of the innovation and vision for it; later on, it is possible to add more features over time.
The Fitbit analyzer also can connect to mobile devices and record the data. One of the core aspects of modern athletes is that they are using technology to improve their performance whether it is improving recovery or enhancing training. This is an addition to the technology movement to enhance the performance of athletes while also providing utility to consumers.
Over time, the product can be improved and even correlated with other performance technology. As many sports require their unique apparel, the heated jacket can continue in its form to apply more tech that the other sports need (Pilus et al., 2017). This could entail details such as force, velocity, etc. to improve training; even if such technology may not be allowed in competition, it can help in training.
The trend here shows that there is a focus on data and performance; athletes are constantly looking for metrics to assess their performance like a heartbeat after a certain workout, elevation, and much more.
They also want convenience and performance such as a heating jacket for the winter Olympics. The availability of this jacket will be beneficial for athletes worldwide as they will be able to perform better with proper data.
The apparel industry is always finding new designs and developments; traditionally, companies like Nike have often utilized technology for their product like shoes. As Nike is at the top of the market, Adidas can potentially increase their position with technology embedded in the apparel and more such as shoes as well.
In particular, shoes need data as well such as velocity, speed, and more. This can create a whole line-up of smart or technology products that Adidas can sell as a line-up or separately.
This emphasizes that there is significant potential for Adidas in developing this jacket and more in the future. It is a pathway to a new technology offering that can rival what Nike is doing. The winter Olympics are an ideal avenue by which Adidas can test the product and then develop it further. The Olympics tagline or being an official Olympic product has a significant opportunity to increase success with the offering in any direction Adidas may consider going into.
Ultimately, Adidas has implemented the Innovation Process Model by Schein in their organizational culture. As Adidas has a support platform for innovation form its employees, it will instill assumptions that creative ideas will be well received and fostered with the company’s massive resources. As based on the Innovation Process Model, searching for opportunities is one of the key elements in starting the innovation in the first place. For example, as the winter Olympics are an opportunity, the heating jackets became the innovation to then acquire the benefits from. With employee empowerment in the culture, the opportunities can be searched and leveraged regularly.