Five Things the Government can do to boost Innovation

It is generally agreed that the best way for Western economies to compete with China and India is on innovation not cost. What steps can the Government take to improve innovation?  Here are some practical suggestions. 1. Make it as easy as possible to start a new business. Most radical innovations come from start-ups and we need a lot more of them. It is already reasonably easy to start a new business... Read More--

Two Important Things that lead to Innovation are Pain and Slack

If you want innovation then think about these two words – pain and slack. They can lead you to innovation success. Wherever there is a pain there is a need for innovation. So if you are looking to create new products or services look for the pain points. Study your customers and their everyday activities. Where do they have difficulties in using the product or services that you and your competitors... Read More--

A Six Point Plan to Boost Innovation in your Business

1. Diagnose the current situation First you need to assess how good you are at innovation and find out what is impeding it in your organization. Could it be a lack of vision or a complacent culture, or perhaps a difficult approval processes for new ideas? Try our interactive survey on the Test Yourself page. Or for a fuller understanding of the issues you can carry out an Innovation Audit. The audit... Read More--

Keep Senior Managers away from Innovation Projects

Billions of dollars are spent on developing and launching new consumer packaged goods (CPG) products each year, and some companies see tremendous success while others – don’t. Why? One secret appears to lie in the degree of senior management involvement in the creative process, according to a study by The Nielsen Company. Nielsen’s research of the innovation processes at 30 large... Read More--

How do you Get People to Buy into your Innovative Idea? Build a Prototype.

How do you get people to buy into an idea? How can you help them to really grasp the concept, understand what it is and to make suggestions rather than criticisms? One of the best ways is to make it real. Build a prototype. In his book, The Art of Innovation, Tom Kelley of IDEO talks about how Jeff Hawkins of Palm developed the Palm V PDA to replace the rather clumsy Palmpilot. ‘From the outset,... Read More--

How to get ahead of the Game and Anticipate the Wave

Great business innovators often appear to have anticipated a trend. It seems that they must have been prescient in that they got into the right place at the right time and produced the product or service that people wanted next. How can some people forecast the future and anticipate the unknown? The reality is that they do not. More likely they observe something that is already happening and see an... Read More--

Define your Ideal Competitor

Try this management exercise. Take your group and divide them into teams of four to six people. The brief is simple. Imagine that an immensely wealthy corporation has decided to enter your business market and plans to create a powerful competitor that will use innovative approaches to seize your customers and wipe you out. It will deliberately exploit your weaknesses to hurt you in the marketplace.... Read More--

Use Technology to Reach your Customer in a New Way

Peter Wood In the early 1980s, if you wanted to take out motor insurance in the UK then you went to a high street insurance broker who took down all your details on various forms and sent them off to insurance companies to get quotes. The insurance broker insisted that it took all his skill and experience to eventually get you a good policy. Then Peter Wood came along and took a different view. He... Read More--

Agility and Innovation are the two strategic advantages of Small Businesses

Agility Many leaders of small firms focus on making their business work efficiently and on delivering high-quality customer service. There is absolutely nothing wrong with these objectives. They are both essential aims. However, if they lead to rigidity and the exclusion of variation then they can undermine the key advantage that small businesses have over large businesses – agility. If you run... Read More--

Fail Often, Fail Cheap and Speed up your Innovation Approval Process

Draw a flow chart diagram of your organisation’s approval process for innovations. Pick an example for a theoretical new idea. Suppose it is a good idea to improve customers’ satisfaction that would involve significant spending and the co-operation of several departments. What levels of approval and authority would it need to see the light of day? Who are the key stakeholders in the approval... Read More--