A gentleman was walking through an elephant camp, and he spotted that the elephants weren’t being kept in cages or held by the use of chains.
All that was holding them back from escaping the camp, was a small piece of rope tied to one of their legs.
As the man gazed upon the elephants, he was completely confused as to why the elephants didn’t just use their strength to break the rope and escape the camp. They could easily have done so, but instead, they didn’t try to at all.
Curious and wanting to know the answer, he asked a trainer nearby why the elephants were just standing there and never tried to escape.
The trainer replied;
“When they are very young and much smaller we use the same size rope to tie them and, at that age, it’s enough to hold them. As they grow up, they are conditioned to believe they cannot break away. They believe the rope can still hold them, so they never try to break free.”
The only reason that the elephants weren’t breaking free and escaping from the camp was that over time they adopted the belief that it just wasn’t possible. The elephant can’t think out of the box. There is no innovative quality bestowed. The elephant likewise if a person does not innovate or think different than what he/she has been used to they are not innovative.
While creativity is thinking out of the box, innovation is putting into action a creative plan. For innovating a product or service we must consider the following:
- What is required or desired by the users? It means that innovative products or services must meet defined or undefined needs of the consumers.
- What is possible with the existing technology? One has to keep in mind the available technology innovation can ride or ameliorate on, so as to make the innovation more achievable. Moreover, one really need not re-invent the wheel.
- What is viable in the market place? It is necessary to find out the viability of the innovative product or service which has been conceived before starting work on it. Truth be told, viability is critical to prevent wasteful efforts.
Simply said, innovation is change that unlocks new value.
The Following are the 7 steps that held, produce innovation smoothly.
- In order to ascertain desirability to the users we must start with the concept crisis: If trying to upgrade a product/service one may ask the customers who its current users are. Observing the product in use and reviewing the difficulties and complaints faced by the current consumer will give a clearer picture of the desired modification or innovation.
- After identifying what needs to be done a detailed plan including the target result has to be laid out. One should run brain storm sessions, and if a corporation, the company’s whole brain should be used. It is a myth that innovation is the brainchild of a single genius; rather it is the result of collaborative effort.
- The organization needs to examine the related current patents before undertaking innovation. One should not find out later on, that somebody else already holds a patent for the innovation conceived and worked upon.
- Failures are a part of creating anything new. Failures should not deter the process of innovation. It’s necessary to persistently follow the plan. Often results take longer than expected. Persistence is crucial.
- During the process of creating an innovative product or service the organization should consistently review i)what new additions can be made ii) what new ways can be adopted that could change the design or the processes.
- A friendly environment should be created and a keen sense of curiosity needs to be encouraged. At every stage the output reached is reflected upon. The process of innovation can be made smooth only with an in depth contemplation and an environment that promotes creative thinking.
- Innovation is best achieved when a creative idea is selected & the leader is totally committed to that new idea. Passion produces results. The leader must also have good business sense and a broad understanding of how things feel inside or outside the company. The requirement is that of strategic thinking or of a ‘helicopter sense’- a talent for rising above the smaller details to be able to see the big picture. Such a leader is able to create a cohesive and driven team which is in turn is fully dedicated to the project. The plan must be prepared in a collaborative fashion. The team members should also contribute in making the plan. Team work needs to be ensured.
Thanks for reading.