Switzerland has around 590,000 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). They constitute the backbone of the country’s economy thanks to their high degree of expertise, their innovative spirit and their international network.
Innovation, the key to the future
To ensure their sustainability and competitiveness, companies must never stop developing and improving. If Switzerland regularly ranks among the most innovative countries in the world, it is thanks to its SMEs. By offering the Mobilière Forum, La Mobilière contributes, as part of its societal commitment, to ensuring that SMEs preserve their capacity for innovation.
How to develop new products or services? In what new areas to establish? How to meet new customer needs? These are the issues that frequently challenge SMEs.
Compact workshops adapted to the needs of SMEs
The Forum Mobilière is an innovation platform created in Thun in 2014. With the “Forum Mobilière Lausanne”, La Mobilière now also offers SMEs in French-speaking Switzerland a suitable space to address issues of the future.
A multidisciplinary team made up of members of the management and staff of the SME tackles a specific problem, accompanied by a professional speaker who leads the discussions. A creative and inspiring atmosphere reigns there, with concrete results at the end of each session. Pierre-Yves Caboussat, facilitator of these workshops, underlines the structured process, based on the Design Thinking method: “With this user-centered approach, companies take home concrete solutions for the problem at hand and learn an effective method. that they can use in everyday life. ”
Dominique Rast, Director General of ORIF, an organization in charge of integration and vocational training in French-speaking Switzerland, participated in a workshop with an interdisciplinary team. This workshop helped develop a culture of innovation in business, which has since been established at all sites. He describes a positive experience: “By bringing together all the hierarchical levels of the company, the Mobiliar Forum allowed us to adjust all together on the vision of the organization and the challenges we are facing. We learned how to manage innovation. It’s amazing to have progressed with methods that seem fun and to have developed ideas that can be exploited. It really is a magnificent discovery! ”
From machine to app
In recent years, more than 200 workshops have taken place, with more than 2,600 participants. During the “Forum Mobilière Thoune”, Essemtec AG thus developed the prototype of a new machine, which was put on the market 15 months later. After a workshop, four trading companies from Thun founded a joint venture, SmartGU, to improve their management of the kitchen and bathroom market. As for the Artsnext company in Zurich, it has developed the basics of its application VUC ^ it, which offers small exercise sessions to help its users to remain successful in the virtual world of work.
The “Lausanne Mobilière Forum” is part of the societal commitment of La Mobilière, a company with cooperative roots. The two-and-a-half-day workshops take place each year in the spring and fall. Participation in an innovation workshop is free and open to all SMEs.
More info and reservations on www.mobiliere.ch/fml