3.11.2015

Innovation is not always nice to have. Unless you play-to-win!

Because of today’s business hype for innovation we encounter situations where there can be too much of a good thing going on and successful companies tend to be aware of this potential pitfall. As much as a complete lack of innovation will lead to failure in an organization, left unmanaged, too many innovative ideas can cloud the judgement on which ideas are truly great. Innovation management therefore is crucial in the success of any organisation.
Professor Everett Rogers, communications and journalism expert at the University of New Mexico, gives the classic definition of what characterizes an innovation in a book entitled ‘Diffusions of Innovations’. He argues that anything claiming to be innovative must first be relevant in its spread and impact on society. Put it another way, whom will benefit from it really? Take the example of the metric system: there has always been resistance to certain innovations like this one. As we already know not everybody around the world is using this system of measurement although for others it is the long ago accepted norm.
So what could make us choose a certain innovation? It could be that we choose the ideas that feel just about right for our needs. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that we can translate the same innovation to any group or market, or that implementing that idea will have the same positive effect everywhere. If you would have just invented the metric system how would you pitch it to a venture capitalist and would you even bother?>>>

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