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5 Contrarian Tips On Innovation
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PatMorrell
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PatMorrell,
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5/15/2013 | 3:45:54 PM
re: 5 Contrarian Tips On Innovation
Great point re: "summer action flick", Tony. Innovation, by nature, often produces incremental improvements. At it's core, it's really a process of reducing inputs and/or increasing outputs; that process is not always the most thrilling endeavor (particularly for higher-level execs who aren't living in the day-to-day successes/failures with the tactical innovation team).

In our experience, the challenge/trick to maintaining focus on, and enthusiasm for, innovation is to regularly reiterate "this is the input we're reducing, and the is the output we're increasing." Framing it in this context, with the business need at the forefront, can help teams stay focused on the right end-goals and help skeptical corner offices stay supportive of the project. This regular input-output sanity check can also help mitigate the rampant curiosity that emerges when folks take "fail fast" too far and too literally.
Tony Kontzer
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Tony Kontzer,
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5/13/2013 | 11:49:22 PM
re: 5 Contrarian Tips On Innovation
Really great examples of counter-instinct innovation initiatives, Chris. The Intermountain example about the server installs is a particularly powerful one. I'm betting a huge percentage of CIOs wouldn't even classify that as innovation--they'd call it something blander like "process improvement" out of some misguided idea that innovation needs to be huge, like a summer action flick.

Tony Kontzer
InformationWeek Contributor


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