12/16/2006

Innovation you told me, what a mess

Since more than 20 years the word " innovation " inflated the business media. Due to ambiguous and continuously shifting definitions, innovation is used in a lot of point of view referring to processes, as well as ideas, methods or devices[1] :

 • The process of making improvements by introducing something new.
 • The act of introducing something new: something newly introduced. (The American Heritage Dictionary)
 • The introduction of something new. (Merriam-Webster Online)
 • A new idea, method or device. (Merriam-Webster Online)
 • The successful exploitation of new ideas. (Dept of Trade and Industry UK)
 • Change that creates a new dimension of performance. Peter Drucker (Hesselbein, 2002)

As pointed out by Richard Hudson[2], editor of Science|Business, " what is this thing that everybody in business is talking about ? It's the new plot, apparently, to another war-game from Electronic Arts. It's something that dairy farmers in Chile say they want. It's in the job title of a new executive at France's Schneider Electric. It describes a new prize for erotic art in Australia. It’s in countless corporate slogans. It's epidemic now in public policy, with many learned reports on nurturing it, identifying it, funding it or freeing it "

More over, Science|Business has invented its own index of technology markets : the " Innovation Index ". It's a very simple count of the number of times that the word " innovation " appears in business media… The Innovation Index. Viewpoints, 29 November 2006, R Hudson - The problem with innovation

In its post, Richard argues for the sake of innovative industries everywhere and opened a discussion forum for innovative alternatives to " innovation ".

Why should we continue to misuse the word " innovation " ? Do we have to don't use it anymore ? Do we have to find another word ?

I personally consider innovation as the process performing the equation : Innovation = Invention * Successful Exploitation.

But the discussion is open…

[1] Wikipedia.org
[2] Richard Hudson - The problem with "innovation". Science|Business, 29 November 2006

16:18 Posted by St Wojcik in Entrepreneurship | Permalink | Comments (1) | Tags: innovation |  Facebook |

Comments

Why do 88% of Ideas Fail to Make it to Market? I define innovation as:

"Satisfying customers' unmet desires"

Unmet that covers the newness, satisfying desires reflects actually delivering something rather than just inventing a useless gadget. You can satisfy an unmet desire without creating anything new but rather delivering to people that needed it.

Most people think creativity is the key to innovation and that is not true. Innovation requires 7 parts. Creativity only helps with one part. You need ALL SEVEN to innovate.

Posted by: Mark Proffitt | 05/24/2007

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