Articles Tagged ‘Business innovation’

Igniting Innovation – Part II

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

SerinaKelly

In a previous article, I covered two of the four ways to ignite innovation according to an article I read on CBS Money.
Connect to Igniting Innovation – Part I

Let’s cover the last two ways:

Number three – Create a common enemy (or what I would say is competition keeps us on our toes)

I am a firm believer that competition or adversaries are extremely good for business. If we didn’t compete, many of us would become complacent. If I were the only marketing company in town, I probably wouldn’t read as much or try to get a heads up on new ideas coming out on social media, but then again, if I didn’t have competition, I wouldn’t have much reading material as I read from my competition because many of them are quite smart!

Let me give a more personal example – my 16 year old son and his basketball career. When he is fighting for a spot on varsity, he plays his heart out. Everyone sees just how good he can be. But if he thinks he’s a shoe-in, it’s a totally different game. And, what he noticed is if he plays hard, another kid on the team plays hard because he’s fighting for that spot as well. So, overall the team is better because of it.

So, what can you learn from your competitors? What can you do to become the business others think of as their common enemy?

And number four – Focus on what can be done with “spare parts”

Great ideas emerge from “spare parts,” according to Steven Johnson’s book “Where Good Ideas Come From.” What is it that you would consider your spare parts – that you have extra of that others don’t. But you must act fast on it as if something is achievable, your competition is heading that way as well.

The thing about innovation – it needs to be done quickly. Honestly, that is where I fall short as I am a thinker and feel the need to think things through, but I have met many entrepreneurs that I tease who have the “squirrel” mentality – from the movie “Up” for those who don’t get it – SQUIRREL! And, they are usually the ones that are truly innovation leaders.

Serina Kelly
Relevate
www.getrelevate.com
serina@getrelevate.com
317-203-7740

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Igniting Innovation – Part I

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

SerinaKelly

I am amazed by the mind of the innovator. I have met many innovators since starting my own company three and a half years ago – many of them are entrepreneurs that I would sit down with and end up being in awe of them. I know I don’t give myself enough credit in this space, but honestly, sometimes I feel out of my league, but I know that is where most of my learning will take place as well.

I just read an article about innovation and how it cannot be managed, but can be led – and it listed four ways to do just that. I figured I would give my two cents worth of knowledge, experience and observation on each of these four ways over the next few blogs:

First one – Focus on the immediate need, not the long-term problem

What can you do right now to get what your immediate need is? Many times for entrepreneurs, especially those starting out, it’s about cash flow. Get some cash in quickly, so you can turn those ideas into reality. One such entrepreneur I respect is Nick Carter of AddressTwo. He started AddressTwo because a marketing client of his needed a simple CRM. He charged his client to build the system he wanteded and then has developed it into something so much more when others had an immediate need for something more. Each time, charging someone for the initial prototype per se and then using that knowledge for others.

So what is it that your client or your business could use right now?

Number two – Highlight scarcity

I am sure there are people with innovative ideas from blue-sky thinking or just sitting around with lots of extra time, but in many cases, the truth is that necessity is the mother of invention and innovation. Your company or client needs something, as a true innovator, you come up with what is needed. Those pie-in-the-sky ideas usually stay pie-in-the-sky until someone is in desperate need of it. Think about wars and how the need for better weapons increases technological innovations and breakthroughs.

What is your client or your business lacking? What is your scarcity? Don’t wait too long to figure it out as you need to give innovation enough time to offer solutions.

Serina Kelly
Relevate
www.getrelevate.com
serina@getrelevate.com
317-203-7740

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