Skunk Works Case: Prius

From an interview in Time (Time, you’re still here?) with Gerard Tellis – author of Unrelenting Innovation – comes this reference to the skunky methodologies used to invent the Prius:

“The person at the top needs to realize that a change is needed. Take Toyota. At one point, it was just focusing on increasing sales of its highly successful Camry. Then when the U.S. government began to emphasize fuel efficiency, Toyota’s CEO set up an independent unit and tasked it with developing an electric car in a very short time. Isolating the unit from the corporation, giving it a clear charter and giving it autonomy enabled it to innovate and not be stuck with the major culture of the corporation. The result was the Prius.”

See what I’m talking about.

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