Fast Company’s Innovation Station offers a couple new columns about, well, innovation. The first, by Iconoculture consumer analyst Michael Tchong, starts with a very interesting survey stat showing the growing importance of ideation and innovation:
In 1991, 37% of top management surveyed by McKinsey and I&TM reported they wanted to be innovation leader in their category. By 1999, that innovation strategy had jumped to 95%. This marked shift signals one of the fundamental changes of doing business these days: global competition, a changing consumer, and time compression have made innovation paramount for survival.
In strategy meetings throughout the world, “ideation” sessions are taking place. Their goal? Brainstorming the next big hit. But how does one latch on to a new idea? And how do you propel your organization forward to make it receptive to the change management required to bring new ideas to market?
The second, Don’t Confuse Creativity with Innovation by think tank CEO Richard Watson, wanders around a few points but eventually zeros in specifically on the distinction between idea conception and process (execution). He furthers his argument by tying it to one of three (BCG) ways of handling innovations: the integrator approach, the orchestrator approach and the licensor approach.
The main enemy of ideas is not risk but inertia.
Companies also think they can be great at creativity and innovation when generally they’re either good at one or the other. The trick is to know which you’re good at and then to go outside for the other. However, doing this involves a level of self-knowledge and confidence that many companies lack.