Back to the Physics of Innovation. When you handle liquids like water or honey, you can see how they flow and move around as the fluids they are, but when you pour them or when you try to stir them with a spoon, it is easy to see that they behave differently. Both are fluids, but they have very different “viscosity”, a measure of how they flow. Imagine your organisation as a cup full of a liquid and innovation as the spoon trying to stir change into it. Where do you think it would be easier to apply innovation, in a water organization or in a honey organization?
When you encounter a definition for innovation (there are quite a few), it will most likely revolve around either the concept of Idea or the figure of the Customer, maybe even both. So what is first? The idea or the customer? The chicken or the egg? Allow me to think laterally for a moment and say… none of the above!
Most of us are very familiar with the good old management saying that goes: “if it cannot be measured, it cannot be managed”. I have to say that this statement always gives me a chill down my spine. I am not saying that it is not true, but my scientific background reminds me of what is known as the Observer Effect in Physics. So, welcome back to another post in the Physics of Innovation series, where we will speak about measuring.
In these last years we have seen how the urban transport company that moves more people in the world, Uber, does not own any vehicle; that the greatest content providers, Facebook and YouTube, do not generate most of their content; that the largest lodging provider, Airbnb, does not own any hotel or apartment… These are not original observations and there are a number of people using these examples to jump into the realms of Collaborative Economy. In this post I will try to relate this phenomenon to my current professional sector, Engineering Services.
It has been quite some time since my last post in Innovation papers, but I will try to pick up where I left it. I want to start sharing with you what I find to be one of the most interesting and worthwhile initiatives I am aware of in the field of Innovation, Sustainability and Human Progress. I am talking about Katerva and the Katerva Awards, the “Nobel Prize” of Sustainabilty.
I am happy to include today a post from my first “guest writer”, Carlos Aragón, who works with me in the Innovation Management team at Ineco. In his post he speaks about the “Retrovation” trend, going back to the old stuff, as a contrast to Innovation. I hope you find it interesting! (more…)
When I started working on Innovation some years ago, one of the first and best readings that I had the chance of enjoying was the book “The Innovator’s Dilemma”, from Clayton Christensen. If you work in the innovation world, you most probably have already read this book, but if you haven’t, I certainly recommend you to do so.
Although it has taken me a little more than expected, I am back with a new chapter of my series about the Physics of Innovation. Today I am going to speak about something as basic and even primordial as “Fire”. Since the early days of humankind, we are attracted to that dancing show of light and heat that allowed us to comfort ourselves, cook our food, make tools, etc. (more…)
When I told some friends that I intended to set-up a blog to talk about Innovation, one of them very wisely told me: “But why? Innovation is already a worn-out concept!”. Well, I believe there is some truth in this because we are currently experiencing an Innovation bubble or “Innoflation”. Everyone is using the term so much that it seems that if you do not innovate, you will fall from the edge of Earth…
First of all, let me wish you a happy and interesting 2016. As I warned you, I might write some more about the Physics of Innovation. The idea behind this series is to relate well-known physics theorems or phenomena with innovation activities, in order to use them as inspiration or means for reflection.
Let me start this second post with a question: Would you say that innovation is a random or a deterministic process? I will elaborate some more on this, because I believe that the correct answer would be a third one, innovation is a chaotic process.