Archive for June 29th, 2008

Future topics for this blog

I thought it would be interesting to get some feedback on subjects for future blog posts so I asked a question on Linkedin, as you do. So far, the relevant points I’ve got are:

From Siamack Salari – “Understanding the difference between innovation and evolution. Also, unarticulated needs – where do you even begin to disentangle those from everyday life behaviour?” I’ll need to get some clarification on the innovation vs evolution point, but the second point about unarticulated needs is crystal clear and really relevant to targeted technology innovation. Expect some stuff on this.

From Reut Schwartz-Hebron: “Innovation is not just about having a great idea– it’s about implementation and buy in. I think one of the topics technology innovators need are around:
– motivating people to adopt change
– how learning is a teacher’s job (in other words what change facilitators can do to increase learning)”

I think the subject of innovation and change are very closely linked together. Often market breakthrough product implementation first of all requires a mindset shift within the organisation before the end product can be successful. More on this in later posts.

From Brian Cambell: “Why doesn’t TRIZ sell? Why does UK plc pay lip service to innovation? Why do innovation consultants ignore TRIZ?” All good questions, I reckon there¬†should be¬†some good posting to come on this lot. I’ve already had some good debate on the first TRIZ point¬†in comments on my previous post on TRIZ certification.

Finally, from Ellen Domb: “Why “Technology Innovation?” I see lots of situations where it is innovation in marketing or packaging or business processes (be innovative about who the customer could be, rather than the technology of the product.) Technology innovation is a very small % of successful innovation, but it gets a lot of attention already.”

I agree with some of this, in that innovations in marketing, business process or packaging design on their own can¬†deliver significant market impact.¬†There is a place for this type of innovation – for example in the UK the P&G brand Ariel¬†was positioned as an innovative 30 degree Centigrade washing powder even though the product remained unchanged. Suddenly it was very good for saving¬†Polar Bears with nothing more than a new marketing message and packaging design. ¬†In P&G speak, I think this is known as Commercial Innovation. However, while there is a place for this¬†type of innovation, this blog is not that place! This blog is about creating market breakthrough products through targeted technology innovation. What do I mean by targeted? Building on insightful business strategy, combinations of new business models and deep market understanding to scope and direct a systematic process to eliminate the shortfall in today’s technology. This final bit can be done pretty well through combinations of advanced TRIZ thinking, Open Innovation and good old fashioned networking, but there is room for improvement and this is where this blog comes in. This blog is about learning how to target and deliver breakthrough innovation better, with more repeatability and greater vision. In my view this is the sort of innovation which doesn’t get the attention it deserves.

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