I have often wondered with best of the brains and talent working in large organizations, why is that they lack the innovation edge. I have always been suprised how local businessmen or young start-up companies innovate so easily. And how is that organizations that were once touted as being innovative lose their edge as they build-up size?
I believe this clearly affects the way they serve their customers and the products that they design and launch.
I came across this insightful article by Mohan Sawhney on Seven Innovation Myths ( Download innovationmyths.pdf ) . Here are a few things I liked in his article:
- He says it is not the paucity of ideas that’s the problem. It’s the incubation that’s the problem. I loved the analogy -.." To get more tadpoles, you don’t need more eggs, you need better incubators!"
- Innovation is a company-wide competency, not a department responsibility.
- Innovation is not about a loose process but enabling it thro’ a structured process. Quite different from what we are often told.
- Accept early mistakes to innovate.
I really believe innovation is a question of consistent practice, follow-up, measurement and rewarding people who make it happen. Else, there will be lot of talk and no action.