Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

New Organization Design

Framework for Smart Interactive Organizations

The new initiative focuses on four key elements and offers a five-step framework to build modern organizations with a solid foundation and new value chain for long-term growth. As a basis for design thinking & Co., that includes leadership communication 2.0, advanced co-creation and innovation communication management which allow to better lead and interact with individuals, attract talent, and facilitate business innovation.

Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

The Five-Step Framework


Growth 2.0: The New Value Chain Approach

From a dynamic capability view, (a) the innovation communication capability with its five management principles is understood as the firm’s foundation and (b) interaction activities are the linkage between innovation and information processes. Hence, the new value chain is divided into support activities (five management principles) and interaction activities, which play a pivotal role in productive thinking and (re-)connecting with individuals in innovation-information processes.

!!The main difference: The innovation communication capability bridges the gap between innovation and communication at both strategic and operational levels and is a managerial capability for individuals and organizations alike. The new value chain approach is applicable at both individual and system levels and therefore aligned to truly empower individuals to create value and invest in their capabilities to be part of an organization (co-creation view – re-thinking human resource management incl. the role of human beings in organizations).

In other words, there is no innovation and information process without interactions and, hence, the innovation communication capability is key to build a solid foundation for long-term personal and business growth in the digitalized information age.

Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

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Overcoming Individual-System Challenges: From Politics to Capability

Individual leaders can surely make a difference in the world, but it is difficult when a solid foundation is absent and being ‘there and not there’ has become the status quo in relating networks. It is exhausting and makes it difficult to build impactful businesses and create growth opportunities. How can we fix it?

One new approach is the capability-based view which ultimately leads to a shift from politics to capability and from political communication to leadership communication. That includes relational communication management and communication trainings to empower individuals in building mature systems in the long-run. The three basic elements of clear, effective communication are:

Emotional age: The emotional age encompasses emotional intelligence and communication blueprint, which means (1) at which age we stay ‘stuck’ in our personal development with respect to emotional regulation and attachment and (2) how we relate, engage and interact with others based on our upbringing and relating networks in childhood.

Capability to lead: The capability to lead depends on the emotional age and is defined as the ability to positively captivate and inspire people around the world, connect and interact with human beings to systematically co-create solutions and focus on system innovation and long-term growth (methodology).

Communication model design: Communication model design is a powerful technique which describes the rationale of how leaders [individuals and organizations] create value through communication, reach different markets, and successfully link a strategy approach to communication to achieve goals.

Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

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From Change to Innovation Communication

In the open sharing economy with ubiquitous information on various channels, communication plays a pivotal role in co-creation and crowd-powered innovation, for instance, in customer advisory boards where interactions with customers help to engage and listen to customer problems and their new ideas for product and service solutions (customer/human-centric innovation).

In this context, it is crucial to better understand how change communication differs from innovation communication and to learn more about specific communication techniques related to business model innovation, organization design and open innovation.

Change Communication
... is all about managing tasks and people in different projects. Based on a communication plan, project (change) managers deal with disfit-fit thinking and motivational programs including incentives to deliver project results, write up (strategic) communication plans, disseminate and adopt to the New and, finally, move back into the comfort zone (learning model).

Innovation Communication
... focuses on co-creation with individuals and building an innovation culture which allows individuals to grow ideas, adopt a growth mindset and carry on idea dialogs. Based on the visual communication model design, innovation communicators have the capability to lead and use specific instruments to (co-)create value and move forward in their individual growth zone (learning model).

Three specific visual communication techniques are: Communication model design, reflective innovation dialog, and smart idea pitch.

Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

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Why the Dynamic Capability Matters

The innovation communication capability is a strong dynamic capability which helps a firm to seize and transform, create and co-create, and consistently align and realign resources and ordinary capabilities with the firm’s strategy. Hence, the innovation communication capability deeply affects (1) the growth capability of an organization and (2) the establishment of a dialog culture as a catalyst for value creation and long-term growth. In fact, innovation communication raises the level of evolutionary fitness (innovation).

But what are capabilities and specifically dynamic capabilities? A capability, ordinary or dynamic, is a firm’s ability to accomplish its goals. Whereas ordinary capabilities focus on technical efficiency in business functions, the purpose of dynamic capabilities is to achieve congruence with changing customer needs and with technological and business opportunities for doing the right things. Dynamic capabilities are important at the top management level and culture level; for instance, the collective ability to quickly implement a new business model.

Communication for Innovation: The dynamic management framework of innovation communication helps to design, implement and measure the innovation communication capability. The eight dimensions of the innovation communication capability can be translated into five key management principles from the organizational and management view: (1) Strategic Communication Management (SCM); Stakeholder Relationship Management (SRM); Intelligent Information Management (IIM); Capabilities Management (CM); Design Management (DM).

Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

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The Tech-Human Connection: Need for Advanced Co-Creation

Understanding the tech-human connection means understanding information-interaction designs, and more precisely understanding how we inform and interact with individuals by using technologies and learned communication blueprints. It can positively and negatively affect our relationships, culture, and system innovation.

As human beings we have a well-organized system of ideas which helps us to understand what is going on in the world around us and inside (self-talk). It is a specific perceptual lens—a navigation system—that works for us in terms of how we communicate and feel comfortable with events and situations in life. What happens when our navigation system is challenged? To understand (new) ideas and how we react in unfamiliar situations or when we experience disruptive events, we use our knowledge schemes, our templates to organize information and understand interactions with others. These schemes (15 identified information-interaction designs) can be activated and modified every time we seek information, reflect, act, and interact with others based on our ability to communicate with others and ourselves.

Hence, our information-interaction design is the critical impact factor to help us understand how we can bring forward a new idea, be understood in back-and-forth exchanges, and (co-)create unique value with individuals in positive, healthy systems. The new MAZ platform explicitly focuses on developing those information-interaction designs and building responsible businesses with interactive, sensory art dialogs and advanced co-creation. It is also the formula for success in digital business transformation.

Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

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Starting Point: ICAP Study


The ICAP study is a qualitative review designed for HR, strategy and business innovation units to gain a better and deeper understanding of the firm's dynamic capability of innovation communication and visual map of how to build a smart interactive organization.

1. Business Transformation

Identification of information-interaction design/culture and innovation design

2. Growth Capability

Examination of the dynamic capability of innovation communication + fitness level

3. Extra: Guidelines

Innovation communication guidelines for individuals, teams involved in innovation

Three Services +


Growth 2.0 E-Guide

A comprehensive understanding of how to build a responsible interactive organization with a foundation and strong growth capability as a catalyst for long-term business growth

Posters & Templates

New visual innovation design tools and insights posters which allow to facilitate strategy communication for innovation and digital business transformation

Communication Model Design

Learning the powerful technique to master the communicating mind and better understand the importance of information-interaction designs in (dys)functional systems

B2B Order Form


The ICAP study is a qualitative review designed for HR, strategy and business innovation units to systematically examine the dynamic capability of innovation communication and gain new insight into modern organization-innovation design incl. evolutionary fitness. The study provides information about (1) the firm's growth capability and (2) information-interaction design. The review highlights main impact factors that contribute to business innovation, dialog culture, and reveals knowledge on how to build a smart interactive organization for long-term growth.


1. Business Transformation: Gathering information about innovation management linked to communications and reflection on the navigation system of the organization 'how to communicate' in business (model) tansition phases and advanced co-creation

2. Growth Capability: Better understanding of the innovation communication capability with its five management principles which allows a firm to seize and transform, create and co-create, align and re-align resources with a firm's strategy, and govern ordinary capabilities


1. Innovation Communication Capability Review:
Final study evaluation, executive summary, and managerial implications

2. Innovation Communication Guidelines:
Innovation communication guidelines for individuals involved in innovation

Main Benefits

 Identification of growth opportunities and firm's value creation 2.0 drivers

 Better understanding of how to design the innovation-information process

 Bridging the gap between open innovation and communication management

 Status quo and implications for building a responsible interactive organization

Study Standard

 High quality of study materials and the final review report

 Experienced consultant with in-depth expertise & qualification

 Up-to-date, applicable knowledge and managerial implications

 Latest insights in strategic management and digital business

Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann

Nicole has in-depth expertise in digital business, strategy & innovation, and organization design and more than 15 years of professional experience in IT-driven innovation management in logistics, media, (high-)tech markets, and R&D transfer projects. She is coach and senior lecturer in digital business, information and knowledge management, and methodology and a co-editor of the international contributed volume 'Strategy and Communication for Innovation', Springer. She holds a Diploma in Business Economics and did her Ph.D. in Engineering (robotics/automation).


Language: English, Deutsch


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Communication Excellence | Dr. Nicole Pfeffermann


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