‘Our Connected World’ podcast: Tech’s Norris, other innovation experts analyze what innovation means to you

Jul 5, 2023 | Faculty/Staff, General News

Dr. Davy Norris, Chief Innovation Officer at Louisiana Tech, joined two other innovation experts on the Our Connected World podcast from one of the world’s leading technology companies, TE Connectivity Ltd., to explain and discuss current challenges and opportunities related to innovation in today’s rapidly changing technology landscape.

With more than 85,000 employees, including over 8,000 engineers, working alongside customers in approximately 140 countries, TE is in the business of creating a safer, sustainable, productive, and connected future through a broad range of connectivity and sensor solutions.

The company recently conducted its inaugural Industrial Technology Index, a global survey of executives and engineers, and the collected data made two points clear.

One, innovation is crucial to business success. And two, executives and engineers as two separate groups don’t always align on how to set innovation goals, why they’re innovating, or even how to define what innovation means.

To discuss the survey findings and provide valuable insights concerning how TE thinks about innovation, TE assembled a panel consisting of Shad Kroeger, Industrial Solutions President, and Alexandra Spitler, director of entrepreneurial engineering in Transportation Solutions. Norris joined the conversation to offer an external perspective concerning how engineers and executives work together.

Watch a video of the conversation here:

Norris said TE Connectivity is a “global leader in technology innovation across a wide range of industries” and a good teammate for universities.

“It was a pleasure to participate with their leadership in a discussion about the future of innovation,” he said. “Universities like Louisiana Tech have a critical role to play in new technology development as well as talent development for a rapidly changing world. Orienting our strategies, programs, and business model to market leaders like TE Connectivity will drive a bright future for our students and our institution.”

“We know there are critical differences in the way engineers think about (innovation) and the way leaders think about it,” fellow panelist Kroeger said during the conversation. “We wanted to understand that, so that we could get better insights in terms of how we need to work with our customers and work inside of our own organization.”

From an engineer’s point of view, Spitler said that innovation doesn’t always happen on a schedule, but it’s important to prioritize the process amid an engineer’s many responsibilities in an organization.

“I know engineers are tasked with doing a lot of different activities and a lot of those urgent requests that come in that need to be addressed at a certain time. So, it’s sometimes hard to carve out that time and make sure that we’re enabling our teams to (innovate),” she says. “It doesn’t always happen as quickly as we would like it to or that our executive team would like it to. We recognize that. But as long as we’re consistently making time and making it a priority, then I think our teams will be successful in it.”

Learn more about TE at and on LinkedIn, Facebook, WeChat and Twitter.

Also, read the full Industrial Technology Index report at  TE complemented the survey results with ownable perspectives from TE subject matter experts in a report readers can view here.