What is Innovation?

Every CEO from the Fortune 500 talks about innovation.  Presidential candidates debate how to stimulate it.  But "innovation" seems like just another buzzword.  What does it really mean?

 

Real innovation has three elements:  it has to be new and different; it has to solve somebody’s problem; and it has to be made real.  Without being new and different, you just have the status quo.  Without solving a problem, you just have a useless trinket, like a pet rock.  And without actually being executed in the real world, you’ve got nothing but a unicorn - a magical myth that does no one any real good.

 

Real innovation comes at the intersection of all three elements: novelty, value, and reality.  Or new and different, problem-solving, and execution.  Whatever words you choose to describe it, innovation occurs where those three things all come together.

 

Note what innovation is not:  it’s not all about being high-tech.  It’s not about generating patents.  It’s not just about coming up with the radical breakthrough that will change the world.  Little things with existing technology can be innovations.

 

It’s not just about products that go up for sale.  Business models can be innovations.

 

It’s not just about things you sell to people outside your organization.  Internal processes and systems can be innovations.  

 

There are many ways to innovate.  Let's find yours. Click here to learn more about the services offered by Pi Innovation.

 

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