How to Innovate

By | January 30, 2016

Innovation is the buzz word. Every organization and every person on this planet is innovating right now, the very moment.

Today morning as I was stationary at a traffic signal, a lady was walking with a comic book with the characters in the book moving. Correct. You read it right. When you open the book, the character printed on the left side of the page is moving on the right page. I opened the window and asked how much was the book and she replied Rs.50. I immediately paid and picked up. What fascinated me is the very fact that the person who created the comic of 2 pages is sure thinking different and wanted to understand what lay inside.

There is no job in the world which is not worth Innovating for.

How to we Innovate?

Innovation needs hunger. A hunger from the heart with desire to create something new or better something which is already existing. When Dr. Govindappa Venkataswamy (fondly called Dr.V of Aravind Eye Hospitals) noticed that the Mc Donald’s burger tasted the same anywhere he ate. He was inspired to create what he created.

The very fact of survival pushed the person to create the comic book.

Whatever the economic situation is, only the person who is hungry to do something better is the one who is innovating.

Along with hunger, Innovation also needs understanding of the subject matter. For example, even though I am hungry, I cannot improvise on a Cardiac operation because I am not a specialist nor a Doctor. Understanding the problem completely is very important, else we cannot address what we want to address.

Innovation needs patience and perseverance. When trying to build something new or improvising an existing solution, having a buy-in and testing the hypothesis is very important. When Starbucks was entering China, it needed them ten years to make a tea drinking nation just to want a Coffee. This is Business model innovation. Ten years is quite long, but what did it get Starbucks in return? Its market share along with creating a change in lifestyle of the Chinese.

…to be continued.

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