Making people and ideas findable
Last blog, I covered two of the four ways to ignite innovation according to an article I read on CBS Money. Let’s cover the last two:
Number three - Create a common enemy (or what I would say is competition keeps us on our toes)
I am a firm believer that competition or adversaries are extremely good for business. If we didn’t compete, many of us would become complacent. If I were the only marketing company in town, I probably wouldn’t read as much or try to get a heads up on new ideas coming out on social media, but then again, if I didn’t have competition, I wouldn’t have much reading material as I read from my competition because many of them are quite smart!
Let me give a more personal example – my 16 year old son and his basketball career. When he is fighting for a spot on varsity, he plays his heart out. Everyone sees just how good he can be. But if he thinks he’s a shoe-in, it’s a totally different game. And, what he noticed is if he plays hard, another kid on the team plays hard because he’s fighting for that spot as well. So, overall the team is better because of it.
So, what can you learn from your competitors? What can you do to become the business others think of as their common enemy?
And number four – Focus on what can be done with “spare parts”
Great ideas emerge from “spare parts,” according to Steven Johnson’s book “Where Good Ideas Come From.” What is it that you would consider your spare parts – that you have extra of that others don’t. But you must act fast on it as if something is achievable, your competition is heading that way as well.
The thing about innovation – it needs to be done quickly. Honestly, that is where I fall short as I am a thinker and feel the need to think things through, but I have met many entrepreneurs that I tease who have the “squirrel” mentality – from the movie “Up” for those who don’t get it – SQUIRREL! And, they are usually the ones that are truly innovation leaders.