Ideas & Insights – Episode 1: The Winning Innovation Formula
In this episode, John talks about how we understand where companies are at on the “innovation continuum”. The two main factors that typically determines the innovative capacity of a business are its cash flows and the risk acceptance of its people.
On one end of the spectrum are new startup companies. They have no cash flows so whatever the market sees as the best idea wins. Then they can start making cash from this product or service.
On the other end there are large public and private companies. They already have “cash cow” products that they must continue to invest time, money and resources in. They are focused on maximizing returns on their existing things because they have already invested so much in them.
For individuals, risk tolerance and decisiveness are the factors that typically give you their innovative capacity. This is not to be confused with innovative ability. Many big companies have very innovative individuals, but their capacity to push the boundaries of that ability is limited to how much risk they can take and the efficiency of the decision making process. For example you limit innovative capacity if no one wants to risk capital, job security, reputation, resources, etc and the decision making process is very slow.
Once a company determines its innovation capacity or desire to increase that capacity, we deploy our winning innovation formula to kick start the process.
The three parts that add up to make the winning innovation formula are INSIGHTS, STRATEGY and ENERGY.
Context + Questions + Timing = INSIGHTS
Abilities + Thinking + Focus = STRATEGY
State of Mind + Actions + Commitment = ENERGY
INSIGHTS + STRATEGY + ENERGY = INNOVATION
Out of these three parts, the two that businesses miss out on the most are INSIGHTS and ENERGY. There is no shortage of STRATEGY – from internet information or books to learning from other company success or outsourced consulting.
What’s missing is actually taking the time to talk to customers 1-on-1 and get INSIGHTS and then giving your innovation process the ENERGY to survive long enough to become a success.