Innovation begins with an Eye

Leon Segal is quoted in, The Art of Innovation[i], as saying, “Innovation begins with an eye,” though it’s not so much about what you look at, but what you observe.[ii] Sometimes the most helpful ideas are right in front of you, but you fail to notice them. Seeing — that is, perceiving with the eyes — is easy; observation —…

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Fixing Your Misaligned Innovation Strategy

Successful innovation is only possible when an organization’s strategy, culture and capabilities are all aligned. An innovation strategy unsupported by or in conflict with either capabilities or culture is doomed to fail. The most challenging to align are strategy and culture. Imagine Albert Einstein working for you. Or Thomas Edison. Would their ideas flourish in your culture—in your work environment?…

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To Avoid Obsolescence Forget Everything You Know

Organizational Learning, the process of creating, retaining, and transferring knowledge within an organization, is a perennial management topic, but Organizational Unlearning is far more important. Intentionally forgetting old knowledge and old routines to make way for new learning, new ideas and new methods. As Frank Lloyd Wright has been reported to say, “An architect’s most useful tools are an eraser…

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Innovation: What You Think Matters Little

No matter what business you think you’re in, you’re in the tool business. Your customers are not buying the set of features you offer. They’re buying tools that (they hope) will solve their problems and produce their desired results. Often a gap exists between the results you believe your tools are capable of producing and the results your customer produces…

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Disrupt Yourself before Anyone Else has a Chance

When trying to solve new problems or capitalize on new opportunities, individuals and organizations often look inward and apply familiar mental models, tools and techniques that have worked in the past. When these old strategies don’t work, these same individuals often keep trying to make them work — maybe if they just use an old strategy with more gusto, things…

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Differentiate to Dominate

This is part two of my second of three hybrid strategies you can use to win against your big-box competitors: Differentiate to Dominate! You can find part one here. Strategy one, Using Data to Drive Your Bottom-line is available here. D) Next on our list of how to stand out from your competition is to Differentiate on value message. Imagine…

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