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Business reconnecting with Innovation

Business is being constantly cajoled about Innovation. “Innovate or die!”  “Innovation is the lifeblood of the Knowledge Economy!”  Similar slogans abound.

“OK, great. So what is Innovation?”

Well, the answers are often not quite so forthright or clear in response.  Businesses move on and deal with day to day problems and quite rightly don’t spend much time on the unclear and ambiguous.

Is this an opportunity being lost? Well perhaps. Innovation is a misunderstood and perhaps overused term and has been devalued as a result. That doesn’t mean that the statements are untrue or that innovation is of little value, perhaps it means that a disconnect between the term and the value has occurred.

Innovation is only about value.

Innovation is the creation of new value and value for a business needs to be measureable in business terms:  Revenue and Profit.  Now if the output measures can make sense to business still the question still remains what is innovation?

  1. Innovations are products or services that bring some new value to the market.
  2. Innovation is a set of processes that reduce the risk for a business that seeks out new value.

Reconnecting to Innovation

Seeking out new value is an inherently risky business.  There will never be any guarantee of success but in business there are seldom guarantees of anything. If you wish to lead a market you need to be doing something better than your competitors. Have something that offers better value – have a better way of bringing it to market that allows for a more competitive price or better margins. These come from doing something or many things a little (or a lot) differently.

Modern Innovation techniques are about using the knowledge & patterns extracted from years of Human Invention. These patterns channel, focus and develop the natural creativity of teams in business to produce something new or solve a problem in a new way.

Irish Business must connect to practical and effective methods to solve problems and create new value.  Find the tools that can differentiate a company on a global stage. Push past the waffle and the sloganeers and find those who speak the language of business and understand the pressures.

The innovation resources in Ireland are highly trained and usually well tested in business.

The question is:  How do we connect?

I have been a Manufacturing Engineer, a Product Designer, a Program manager, Innovator, a trainer & coach and an Intellectual Property Strategist. I am now a Business Strategist with a generous helping of IP on the side. I blog about Innovation and Innovation in Ireland on Stuff I am into Innovation, TRIZ, Patent research, Intellectual Property strategy, Neuro Linguistic Programming, personal and whole organisational change, Appreciative Inquiry, Ayurveda

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