Lessons in Innovations

Insights from People Design:

Innovation is a threat to yesterday’s success.
Markets don’t always reward new ideas. Focus on customer needs more than customer wants. Markets – people – know what they have experienced, but innovation changes the experience.

Innovation is not a solo flight.
The vision of the lone innovator is dated – the world today is just too complex. Work in interdisciplinary teams and networks. Remember that innovation is often about combination: There will be some chaos, but don’t try to avoid it. Fail fast, start learning, be agile. Innovation – as opposed to invention – is more process than product, and the future of innovation is about collaboration.

Budgeting can be an innovation killer.
Rather than managing costs, focus first on investing to create value. The greatest value of innovation results from a context of profound and prolonged uncertainty. So learn how to react quickly when you discern real sources of value. Innovation – finding new sources of value – needs room to explore.

Experience innovation is infinite.
Innovations in product design, price, and speed to market only go so far, but you can always better understand your customer, their needs and desires, and find ways to meet them that are ever better and differentiating. We continue to see a shift from product to service economy, and exploring this area is a great way to surface new innovation opportunities.

Design processes around your customer.
Organizations need to innovate the customer experience first and then work backwards to deliver that experience. When we make plans, we often get the future wrong because we don’t always understand customer behavior. Do all you can to understand the customer’s context before your next investment.

Wake this heart to truth and love

"God uses human instruments to bring to men the message of his truth and love; but it is He alone who wakes the heart of men to new life. As He alone created the heart, so He alone can re-create it."

- William Barclay (commenting on 1 Cor 3:1-9)

Why the Obama administration (or any for that matter) won't fix the problem

"The man of system, on the contrary, is apt to be very wise in his own conceit; and is often so enamored with the supposed beauty of his own ideal plan of government, that he cannot suffer the smallest deviation from any part of it. He goes on to establish it completely and in all its parts, without any regard either to the great interests, or to the strong prejudices which may oppose it. He seems to imagine that he can arrange the different members of a great society with as much ease as the hand arranges the different pieces upon a chess-board. He does not consider that the pieces upon the chess-board have no other principle of motion besides that which the hand impresses upon them; but that, in the great chess-board of human society, every single piece has a principle of motion of its own, altogether different from that which the legislature might chuse to impress upon it. If those two principles coincide and act in the same direction, the game of human society will go on easily and harmoniously, and is very likely to be happy and successful. If they are opposite or different, the game will go on miserably, and the society must be at all times in the highest degree of disorder."

- Adam Smith, father of Modern Economics (1723-1790)


Perspective in these troubled times

Read these while reading Psalms and Luke this morning on YouVersion...reminds me why this crisis will not be solved by politicians as much as we would like it to be and how this world is not all that is even though it often seems like it.

"Don’t put your confidence in powerful people;
there is no help for you there.

When they breathe their last, they return to the earth,
and all their plans die with them." (Psalm 146: 3,4)

"The time is coming when everything that is covered up will be revealed, and all that is secret will be made known to all. Whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will be shouted from the housetops for all to hear!" (Luke 12: 2,3)