Posted on: July 27, 2019
“An innovation has no value until an ambitious entrepreneur builds a business model around it and turns it into a product or service that customers will buy. If you can’t turn an innovative idea into something that creates a customer, it’s worthless.” Says, Jim Clifton, Chairman, and CEO of Gallup.
We can often see stakeholders, industry leaders, company owners and entrepreneurs discussing about the importance of innovation to get the next blockbuster idea in a new way to do something to change the face and pace of the growing sector. However, innovation is just the initial step of the process that ends up in a good game. Giant contributors are far better at researching and implementing the process of innovation to convert entrepreneurial thinking into revenue. This may also help you to choose your best suited career.
Over the last couple of years, entrepreneurs have initiated the new wave of innovations and corporate venturing to get into the dynamics of creative business. Also, they know that innovation is just not the end game; it needs strategic implementation for a viable business.
Before starting over on the discussion on innovation, let’s get a clear picture of differentiating it with the invention. Inventions are the creation of a new product, application, or a developmental process that may suggest a solution to a potential problem.
On the other hand, innovation is done with an existing product, application, or a process with a creative approach in designing a solution. Hence invention is done on the need for something, and innovation is the original way to modify the solutions.
Just like the above comparison, it’s worthy of differentiating between ventures and entrepreneurship as well. Let’s take an example of a person who just opened a restaurant of a highway, and he has made a risk by investing capital. However, he has not done something new or something that has not done before by anyone. He has not created anything further to meet a request, neither done anything innovative; this is called venture.
Alternatively, Starbucks is the best example of entrepreneurship. They have not invented anything new, but they have applied some management techniques by standardizing their product and made it a reputable and recognized the brand by serving it to the whole new market and setting an example in the industry. This is an example of how entrepreneurship works.
Ventures can stand alone on their own like inventions; however, innovations and entrepreneurship goes parallel. Most marketing gurus, management experts, and giant business developers believe that innovation and entrepreneurship are the two main pillars in every industry. Entrepreneurs innovate, and innovation motivates entrepreneurs. Both exploit change as a necessary part of opportunities and inspirations.
Innovation is not about being technical all the time. Being innovative in your strategy and process manufacturing can also benefit you in your business. Some innovations are a result of brilliance; some are intellectual pretensions that may turn into a highly profitable idea.
A global professional services company named Accenture conducted a survey in which the results concluded that 93% of the business executives think that innovation is essential for any company’s long term growth and success. Also, 23% of them acknowledged that innovation and research efforts of their business were providing them great revenue advantage.
Hence, the survey shows that all the industry stakeholders and market leaders know the importance and need for innovation for their businesses. However, most of the time, they lack implementing a strategy to get the work done. Although innovation may not come with a guarantee of success, still it can present you with a clear path to go from point A to Z. You just need to learn the rules of innovation to get the desired results.
Innovation can be considered as the idea that can change the world. But actually, it’s more a form of “Eureka Moment” with a significant amount of complexity.
Innovation has the process of getting an idea into a profitable business. First, you have a thought that may come in a brilliant flash and made a foundation for innovation. Then you mold the idea into a practical approach to provide a solution with creativity. Hence, once you start implementing it, gradually it comes to fruition, and you can see your idea being transformed into a successful business.
The above process may take several years to accomplish your desired goal. However, in some cases, it may take just a few months or even decades to get what you have dreamed of. You just need to be patient and keep going by sticking to what you aim for. Your resilience is the key to achieving greatness in innovation and excellence.
Albert Einstein is considered as the greatest innovator in the history. People may think that he spent his life working for innovation, but the fact is, he spent more of his time in thinking for innovations. He used to say: “If I had 20 days to solve a problem, I would spend 19 days to define it.” He meant that if you want to achieve something great, you should ask the right questions and then begin the process of innovation. By this, you will identify the relevant need and suggest a targeted solution that is best suited for the problem.
Here, Steve Jobs can be considered as the perfect example of innovating and revitalizing Apple by the launch of iPods and iPhones. He started creating iPods with the idea of having “A 1000 songs in my pocket“. The concept and need of creating a disk lead him to hire a disk manufacturer because he couldn’t make it by himself. That’s how an idea for innovation works. Ask the relevant questions, define needs, make a path for manufacturing, and make it work as per your idea.
There are lots of examples when innovations don’t fit into conventional business models. Entrepreneurs have changed their business models to adapt their ideas of innovative ideas which proved the decision to be right in getting success.
Let’s take the example of Haloid Corporation. The enterprise manufactured copy machines in bulk, but no one wants to buy them in the market. The company’s entire finances were built around selling those machines to generate revenue. The CEO got the idea of leasing those machines to companies instead of selling them. The issue was, the idea was not the part of their business plan.
Hence, they had two options. One, forget the idea of leasing and trying to sell those machines with no modifications. Second, they made a change in their business plan with innovating in specifications.
The company decided to change its business plan specifications along with its name, and the rest is history. Today we called it “Xerox”. The company made the right choice and became initiator in the industry by establishing their worth and technology both.
Hence, if you have an excellent idea for innovation, don’t be afraid to get it into your business model by modifying your plan. An idea can turn your business into the next big thing in the market.
A traditional sweet shop morphed into India’s favourite story of innovation by offering a well-packed quality product that is extensively available nationally and internationally, we know it by the name of “Haldiram’s.”
There are hundreds of dazzling stories of entrepreneurship and successful innovations that have pulled off impossible things into possible by making a breakthrough in their industry. The essential thing to keep in mind here is that innovations need to be grandiose in every way. It is always better to start small by investing a limited resource and a few people in the market and then gradually taking off to the expansion and addressing specific issues so that you can suggest a need.
Hence, innovations are handled by humans, as they are intricate and intelligent. But innovations are worth having risk. Some may just be in the mind of entrepreneurs, some are in process for approvals, and others have been proven to be the best decision of their creators. There is always enough room to make changes that are inevitably required to achieve something big.
As mentioned earlier, Entrepreneurs consider innovation as a necessity for the potential growth of any business. It needs knowledge, passion, creativity, and will to challenge the conventional ways of business and create something new to lead the market. Innovation is based upon the changing needs and meeting customer demands by giving them a unique solution. It may be messy, scaring, and risky most of the times; you may find bumps in the way.
However, if you are committed enough to stick to your idea, you can stay in the market power. So roll your sleeves up and think of suggesting some unique solutions to the industry with creativity. You just need to think outside the box to show off the world your worth.