Nothing more dangerous than an Idea...

Vincent Heeringa and I spoke to a group of invited guests at Baldwins Intellectual Property’s offices the other day.We composed a the Creativity 10, a list of thoughts to encourage more innovation and commercially viable outcomes.

Here’s my number 4 - Create an innovation system

There is nothing more dangerous than an Idea – if it is the only one you have.

The definition of business success is: a healthy business that succeeds over time.

Flash in the pan invention or businesses founded on one good idea will probably fail – by that measure.Staff suggestion box thinking doesn’t cut it in the 21st Century. Creativity and ideas might sometimes happen serendipitously but in business relying on a random approach won’t generate a significant result. In many ways there are parallels to science. An experiment has to be able to be reproduced for the findings to be validated.

Including innovation as a strategy –  more than a core competance- but a distinctive competance. (Core competance – activity or skill you can regularly perform very well/Distictive Competance: something you are uniquely good at by comparison to rivals). Apply resources to a managed process of creativity – make systematic implementation to develop commercially viable  a prority. There is no point getting good at having ideas you can’t get made.

Bring in outside help  to analyse your processes today, and coach your employees to take personal responsibility and ownership of innovation processes – every day (my rates are very reasonable).

David MacGregor is a founder and creative director of Idealog. He teaches design students at Massey University to ‘think different’ and has a creative coaching business:


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