Monitor Your Innovation Capability in these Three Areas

Many organizations have top-level goals for innovation but struggle to measure progress toward them.  How can you assess the current state of your innovation capability?  There are three critical areas to consider. First, you should measure your ability to fill the pipeline by monitoring the number of new ideas being generated.  If you have a suggestions scheme you can scrutinize how many submissions... Read More--

Focus on the Opportunity, not the Problem.

Two groups of engineering students were given a similar task – to design a bicycle rack for a car.  The first group was shown an existing but poorly designed roof rack for bicycles.  They looked at all the issues with the current design and then set out to come up with something better.  The second group was not shown the ineffective roof rack; they were simply told to design a really good bicycle... Read More--

10 Ways to Simplify your Business

Gordon Tredgold We tend to over-complicate things.  We try to do to many things instead of focusing on a handful of essential priorities.  So says Gordon Tredgold in his book, FAST – Principles every business needs to achieve success and drive results.  He expounds four key precepts: Focus, Accountability, Simplicity and Transparency. The book has many stories, examples and useful tips. ... Read More--

Do Something Different – Lateral Thinking in Sales and Marketing

Why do we keep doing more of the same things?  Is it because they are familiar and easy?  Is it because we are lazy?  Or are we scared that if we try something new it might not work and we will look foolish?  Perhaps we need a reminder that creative and different approaches sometimes work really well.  I have been rereading Do Something Different by Jurgen Wolff.  It contains many stories which... Read More--

Is ‘Jobs to be Done’ the Road Map for Innovation?

Competing Against Luck is the rather curious title of a new book by the eminent innovation guru, Clayton Christensen, ably assisted by three acolytes, Hall, Dillon and Duncan.  It is an important work which makes some big claims.  The authors expound and develop the theory of ‘Jobs to be Done’ and they assert that for the first time this gives a road map for where and how a company should... Read More--

Webinar on How to Think like an Innovator

There are hundreds of books on innovation so why do we need another one?  Find out on this webinar:   Brightalk Webinar. Rod Sloane interview Paul Sloane   Including the stories of three great innovators; Anita Roddick, Jorge Odone, Sir Charles Dunstone.   Save ... Read More--

The Ten Types of Innovation

How many types of innovation are there? The simplest way to categorize innovation is into two forms – incremental and radical. Incremental innovation is an improvement in an existing thing (e.g. product, process or service). Radical innovation is finding an entirely new way of doing something. For example if you had been making spectacles in the 1950s then plastic lenses instead of glass lenses would... Read More--

Think Like an Innovator

Paul Sloane introduces Think like an Innovator, his new book published by Pearson.  It contains inspiring insights and powerful lessons from 76 great innovators ranging from Pythagoras to Bowie, from Madonna to Marie Curie.     ‘Invaluable tips on how to change your mindset and see great innovation opportunities.’  Professor Moira Clark, Henley Business School. ‘A refreshing,... Read More--

Idealize the Answer

When you are looking at a tricky problem try specifying the ideal answer in a world where there are no constraints.  What would a perfect solution look like if we had unlimited resources to achieve it? In the book, Idealized Design[i], Russell Ackoff, Magidson and Addison describe how Bell labs did just such a thing with the telephone.  In the 1950s the VP of Bell labs challenged teams of engineers... Read More--

What is a Minimum Viable Product and what is its Purpose?

There is much talk in the innovation community about the need to produce a minimum viable product (MVP) and bring it quickly to market. But what exactly constitutes a MVP and what is its purpose? In his seminal book, The Lean Startup, Eric Ries defines the MVP as a version of the entrepreneur’s product which enables a full turn of the Build-Measure-Learn cycle with minimum effort and the least amount... Read More--