Culture of Innovation: 3 golden rules for relating to startups

100 Open Startups
3 min readSep 16, 2022


The Culture of Innovation is a movement about how people who are part of a corporation can bring innovative ideas, adding value from the relationship with external agents, such as startups.

Today, the challenge for corporations is no longer finding startups, but the ability to generate value consistently with the innovation ecosystem and have more people trained for this type of activity, that is, how to establish a strong Innovation Culture that result in sustainable growth.

According to Bruno Rondani , CEO of 100 Open Startups , there are three fundamental rules to establish open innovation processes between corporations and startups, and they encourage the journey towards innovation, as well as help in the development and maturation of the innovation ecosystem. Check out the 3 golden rules to consolidate your culture of innovation:

Training and Culture

The starting point is training, that is, how the corporation is preparing teams and people to work with open innovation and, consequently, with startups.

Training should not be restricted to the company’s core business . Executives, leaders and managers need to be prepared for the relationship with startups, including understanding the importance of innovation for processes, business and value generation for future solutions and creation of new products.

Furthermore, it is necessary to guarantee the ability to innovate , not only of a small group or of some areas, but of the entire corporation, forming potential innovators (people capable of absorbing and producing innovation) by the tens or hundreds, really making that innovation becomes a value, a capability, a competence and what it should be: a routine in corporations .

Thus, it is essential to work on the decentralization of innovation.

Methods and Processes

Connecting with startups is an essential practice. However, there is a great challenge, which is to reconcile relationships with the generation of results.

Each organization is free to structure its evaluation processes, regarding methods and KPIs, but it is necessary to make a good definition of these methodologies, taking into account the maturity of the corporation in the innovation ecosystem.

The journey of producing results is long, complex and varied. It is important to be aware that a new job, a new language and a new type of relationship are being built. In this way, training is once again important in this pillar, as executives, leaders and managers need to understand how to relate to startups and how to generate results with these external agents.

Starting from scratch, the question is: What is your objective , your organizational model and the important KPIs for your corporation? List, exchange information and align with executives, leaders and managers as well as startups. Mistakes are part of the journey and, in a way, are even necessary for growth.

Relationship with the Innovation Ecosystem

Open innovation cannot be done without the involvement and relationship with the innovation ecosystem. According to research conducted by 100 Open Startups, 87% of corporations with structured and visible programs operate through ecosystem agents.

The keyword for this pillar is collaboration. Actively participating in the innovation ecosystem, through forums, debates and events, will facilitate the consolidation of innovation programs within corporations. Today, with open innovation, exchanges of experiences have become necessary, and the vision of competition and restriction of ideas no longer exists. Those who practice open innovation, practice collaboration and resilience .

Open Culture Movement for Innovation

The movement was launched in response to the main challenge identified by corporations to generate value with startups: the need for more skilled people and a culture that is in fact conducive to open innovation. Meetings are monthly and free!