Innovation Fact 1 – Existing solutions never last
Functions remain, solutions change. When addressing perceived needs in the market, go beyond solutions and try to clarify the main functionality you are trying to provide.
Innovation Fact 2 – Find the real problem
There are many reasons why products fail, but one of the most important ones is that solutions do not always solve the real problem.
Innovation Fact 3 – Focus on one thing
Focus on one thing and do it better than anyone else. Once you found clarity on your core values, focus on developing your product or service to optimally achieve these values. Do not let yourself be carried away by what you see around you.
Innovation Fact 4 – Learn to steal
Don’t reinvent the wheel. Focus on the function you are trying to solve, look around you and find inspiration to build upon. Then make it your own, optimize it and share it with the world.
Innovation Fact 4b – Beware of the “not invented here” syndrome
We tend to criticize and discard ideas that did not originate from us, consciously or unconsciously. Beware of this and always look at ideas and concepts around you with an open mind and judge them by their value, not by their origin.
Innovation Fact 5 – Don’t judge an idea too soon
Many technologies or products have been met with skepticism and laughter when they were launched. When you feel the urge to ridicule new products, try to have the reflex to objectively analyze that innovation.
Innovation Fact 6 – Embrace happy accidents
Breakthroughs often rely on the open-mindedness of innovators to notice something new, unexpected, and intriguing. Extensive cross-industry-research can inspire us to establish new links between previously separate components. No happy accidents per se, but a good way to break through the limitations of your current research and spot some surprising correlations.
Innovation Fact 7 – Keep it simple
Keeping things simple has many advantages. Look at your products or services and ask yourself: “Does it really need to be this complex?” Can I make it easier for users, without losing essential elements”?
Innovation Fact 8 – Too busy to innovate
Planning is essential for innovation – the pull of the ‘urgent, not important’ of routine tasks is just too strong.
It’s time to take action and re-tune, plan more time for the important long-term projects, because these are the ones that will help your company to remain relevant.
Innovation Fact 9 – Learn to listen
By responding to the real needs and interests of your target groups, you learn how you can innovate. Never assume you know all there is to know about your product. Learn to listen and reap the benefits of the gathered insights.
Innovation Fact 10 – Sell an old idea to someone new
Developing new solutions can be expensive, complex and risky. So why not identify new applications and markets for your existing knowledge and solutions? This lowers the risk and leads to new successes faster and cheaper.
Innovation Fact 11 – You are never too big to fail
Innovation is often seen as risky, but it doesn’t have to be a fuzzy process of trial and error. By applying a proven method and understanding your industry and market, you can make informed decisions, removing the risk from innovation.
Innovation Fact 12 – Know when to innovate
Getting the timing of innovation right is fundamental to maximizing the returns. Bad timing can lead to disaster, whether you get to market too early or too late. These are the items to consider.
Innovation Fact 13 – Learn from the best: biomimicry
Biomimicry or learning from nature will only gain importance in the future. Before companies make any design decisions, they should ask: “How would nature solve this problem?”.
Innovation Fact 14 – Waste is money
What is of no use for you can still be valuable to someone else. Audit your waste stream. It can pay off to put some effort into identifying partners who are keen to take your waste and use it as a source material for their product.
Innovation Fact 15 – Society changes, so should your company
Nothing is permanent except change. Pick up these societal changes as fast as possible and think about how they impact your business. And dare to disrupt your own business.
Innovation Fact 16 – Robots will take your job
Do you fear that robots will take your job? A lot of jobs wil likely disappear, but it is up to us to arm ourselves against a future of uselessness. Learn to hit the ground running.
Innovation Fact 17 – It’s not because you can that you should
Stubbornly developing a product nobody wants will lead to disaster. So, think critically about your idea, discuss it with others any way and any time you can. Challenge your idea and adapt to new insights and understandings.