Innovation is the successful introduction of a market offering that
benefits everybody involved, both you and your customers. Innovation
happens when a new product or service creates a return in the market
that far exceeds the time and money it takes to develop and execute.
When your offering is accepted and embraced, generating the resources
that make it possible to support and grow its place in the market –
that is innovation. That’s a positive inflection point. That is what
you must aim for.
From my work on numerous innovation initiatives have distilled seven
key activities that produce results-driven innovation. These activities
are what make the difference between leaders who are haphazardly shoot
in the dark with good ideas and those who consistently and systematically
uncover potential, capitalize on opportunity, and generate traction
that drives success in the marketplace. The seven activities are:
Leveraging Inflection Points
An inflection point is a game changer that has the power to propel you
forward. Expert innovators are able to sense the potential in
inflection points before they take place, and then ride these dramatic
shifts toward four strategic targets: growing your base, increasing the
offerings your customers buy, generating loyalty, and moving you
Systematic innovation relies on the ability to contain the inherent
stresses of a successful innovation environment. Strong innovation
leaders recognize this and intentionally cultivate the people and the
environment that provide a strong foundation.
The best innovation rises from a sea of information about products,
services, customers, competitors, market conditions and internal
capabilities. Business intelligence is the data that supports your
ability to make strategic decisions. It could be information about
products, customers, competitors, the market or internal
capabilities—or all of the above. Effective innovation requires
intelligence to make smart choices that take into account each of these
In order to see new opportunity you must be able to get out of your own
box. Successful innovators question their own assumptions and try on
alternative and helpful points of view.
Successful leaders learn to identify the opportunity embedded in
adverse conditions. It can come from anywhere. If ignored or
mismanaged, it throws business into disarray. But what if you could
take the forces behind these intrusions and turn them to your
advantage? That’s what the masters do. Instead of being waylaid by
adverse conditions, they use them to get the upper hand. You can and
you must become an expert in exploiting disruptions. Don’t fight change
but use it to your advantage.
6. Generating Value
Value has been at the basis of commerce since the beginning when we
first went beyond producing goods for our own use and began to use them
for trade. Value is what we want, what compels us to pay or barter.
Value is what drives all the activity tallied daily in the world’s
markets. Value is the holy grail of business – you must keep your eye
on it 24/7.
7. Driving Uptake
Every stage of the innovation process holds opportunity to engage the
community of people who will be most interested in your offerings.
Innovation leaders intentionally drive this uptake, or market
acceptance, for maximum effect.
If you book conferences, contact me for a special deal in 2013 – I will
be offering over copies of the book for
your audience. All arrangements to take place through my
Neilssen, at BrightSightGroup.com.