Envisioning the autonomous future

Philippe De Ridder

Philippe De Ridder

CEO & Co-founder

In order to capture the opportunity of autonomous innovation, leaders must start by envisioning what that future looks like.

Leaders must envision a future in an increasingly autonomous world, understanding how AI agents, autonomous products, and self-evolving interfaces will redefine consumer interactions and business models.

Elements of the increasingly autonomous world

  • Autonomous assistants: personal AI assistants, tailored to individual preferences, will recommend clothing, meals, and daily routines based on factors like hair color and fitness goals. They will not only curate product options but also take proactive actions, such as booking restaurants or purchasing items. As these AIs become integrated into our lives, companies must design products and services that accommodate them.

  • Autonomous products include self-evolving user interfaces, which adapt and change based on user interaction, bypassing traditional user research and prototyping. This extends to robotics, autonomous cars, agricultural vehicles, and delivery systems—technologies designed to operate independently and adaptively.

  • Autonomous interfaces: self-evolving websites and self-generating interfaces that adapt to needs

  • Autonomous agents: like the example of Devin, the world’s first autonomous AI software engineer

  • Autonomous processes: autonomously developed products or services that are launched in the market

The strategic options to capture the opportunity of autonomous innovation

AI is not about writing our emails faster or making chatbots; it’s about radically re-imagining our world and transforming how businesses and individuals operate within it.

The framework below offers four strategic pathways to capture the opportunity of autonomous innovation 

  • Productivity upgrade
  • System innovation
  • Product innovation
  • Breakthrough innovation

In this strategic framework, the vertical axis shows what we deliver to the market and the horizontal axis shows how we make the products and services and the operating model that underpins them.


Productivity upgrades, while beneficial, are not capturing the whole value that AI and autonomous innovation offers. Rather, leaders should focus on envisioning what the AI native operating model for innovation is in the future, looking at system innovation

How about imagining an autonomous innovation engine that accelerates market launches, turning a two-year development cycle into just five days? What if we could spot a trend in consumer goods and launch a new product almost instantly?

We won’t achieve a transformative future operating model by simply tweaking current processes or accelerating insights and concept generation with tools like GPT. Instead, we need a complete overhaul of the entire operating model—from sourcing and production to market entry. 

If we broaden our vision for what we bring to the market, we can explore the potential of AI-native products and services—imagining them from scratch to see how they would transform your industry. This involves not just enhancing customer experience with AI-powered innovations but doing so within the existing operating framework. By taking a bolder step and combining these innovations with a completely new operating model, we’re aiming for breakthrough innovation that could completely disrupt established market paradigms.

Rather than focusing on one of these strategic options, the advice is to build a deliberate portfolio approach across all four areas, to have a clear vision of the future and then tailor the portfolio accordingly.

What’s already moving in the market?

Most businesses are already using AI for productivity gain – from chatbots to content creation.

In terms of AI-native operating model, take NotCo as an example; they’ve developed an AI-driven operating model from scratch, using algorithms to match ingredients and create innovative food and beverage products. Looking at product innovation, Adobe quickly responded to new AI trends with their successful launch of Adobe Firefly, integrating it into their enterprise suite. Thinking about breakthrough innovation, consider the likes of the Humane AI pin or the Rabbit device in consumer tech—products poised to challenge the smartphone industry. While it’s uncertain if they will overtake giants like Apple, these AI-native devices represent bold moves in the market.

This leads to a crucial question for discussion within your business: What could be the “Humane AI pin” in your industry? Is there an opportunity to seize with AI-native products and services, and what would an AI-native operating model look like for your business?

Envision the autonomous age

The business case for autonomous innovation

When envisioning the future, it’s crucial to understand what the business case is for autonomous innovation and how it will impact the enterprise value.

Autonomous innovation is expected to boost company growth rates and top-line revenue by speeding up market entry with better, and sometimes more, products, directly impacting new product sales. This approach also promises significant cost savings, through roughly 50% cost saving throughout the product life cycle where applied, enhancing profit margins.

Additionally, as industries adopt more autonomous processes, we anticipate a shift in valuation multiples, possibly aligning closer to tech industry standards, thereby increasing enterprise value.

Markets are likely to assign higher multiples to AI-native companies, similar to how digitally-native companies have been valued. This recognition drives our clients to actively promote their new autonomous innovation initiatives. When building a business case for autonomous innovation, consider its potential to boost top-line growth, enhance profit margins through significant cost and time savings across product lifecycles.

This was a strategic executive perspective on leveraging autonomous innovation for future visioning and enhancing market valuation.

Keen to discover how you can get started with autonomous innovation? Reach out to us.