The Innovative Engine

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This case traces the development of 3M’s innovative and global culture from its early
days through 2018. The main focus of the case is on the evolution of culture at 3M, and
how this culture drove their global strategy through a continual stream of product
innovations that have taken the company into a large number of different industries. The
case also looks at how management deliberately institutionalized the emerging culture
at 3M by creating rules and procedures that provided opportunities for, and rewarded,
innovative risk taking.

You will need to review the case study in your textbook (Case 19), the weekly readings,
and outside research, then answer the following questions utilizing topics covered in
chapters 9 and 10.

  • How was the culture of entrepreneurship and innovation nurtured at 3M from the era of McKnight through to that of DeSimone? How has entrepreneurship been institutionalized within the company?
  • What were the strengths of the organization and culture of 3M during the McKnight to DeSimone era? What were the potential weaknesses?
  • Over their existence, 3M has utilized both related and unrelated diversification.
  • Please provide an example of each in relation to 3M. How did each type of diversification work out for the company?

  • Utilizing different examples than in question 3, what has 3M done right with their
  • diversification? What have they done incorrectly? Why?


  • Submit a two-three page Word document covering the elements of the
  • assignment.

  • Develop a clear introduction, body, and conclusion. Use paragraph format and
  • transitions.

  • Focus on the quality of writing and content.
  • BUS411 – Business Policy


    3M: The Innovation Engine – Case 19

  • Use elements of APA formatting (title, references, and in-text citations). Abstract is not required. The title page, reference page, and appendices are excluded in page length requirement.
  • Research and cite at least two academic sources in APA format.
  • Be sure to read the criteria below by which your work will be evaluated before

    you write and again after you write

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