Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Great Disruption demands we make innovation a strategic priority: now is the time for N-of-8

The world of innovation is going through important changes. A generation ago, many thought innovation was unpredictable and random. Those with this perspective would either leave innovation to "creative geniuses" or seek to intentionally insert unpredictability into their innovation efforts (imagine those old unfocused brainstorming efforts with attendees dressed in ridiculous costumes).

This is the view of Scott D. Anthony, president of Innosight, an innovation consulting and investing company. With offices in Massachusetts, Singapore, and India, Innosight has consulted with Fortune 500 and start-up companies in a wide range of industries. Anthony is the lead author on The Innovator's Guide to Growth: Putting Disruptive Innovation to Work. He previously coauthored (with Clayton Christensen) Seeing What's Next: Using the Theories of Innovation to Predict Industry Change.

Over the past generation, path-breaking academic research and work by companies like Procter & Gamble and IBM has shown how innovation can be managed like any other corporate process.

"We're not yet at the point of perfect predictability, and there still are many important innovation questions that are difficult to answer," Anthony writes. “But innovators have a playbook that can help them even in these highly uncertain times.”

This is just the reason why I'm accelerating the publication schedule of my next branding book, N-of-8®: A Creative Group Innovation Model for Health, Science, & Technology Brands.

I've just posted a preview of the book in white paper form. A free copy is available for download at www.StinsonBrandInnovation.com/brandthinking

The innovation genie isn't going back in the bottle. Entrepreneurs and corporate innovators will continue to introduce disruptive innovations that transform existing markets and create new ones. In fact, the Great Disruption demands that companies make innovation a strategic priority. . .or suffer the consequences.

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