Innovation is the driver of change – the most fundamental force behind long-lasting, successful business strategy. With that in mind, in today’s hyper-competitive marketplace, companies must not only respond to current customer and organizational needs but they also must anticipate trends and develop tools and ideas that allow them to meet future demand effectively. This preparation is the backbone for business longevity and why true, sustainable innovation is so vital for the continued success of a company.
Here are some reasons why innovation plays such a key role in the direction of a company’s future:
A linear planning strategy won’t cut it
1. Conventional problem-solving processes often use the same thinking that created the undesirable problems in the first place. A linear planning strategy is not going to result in ground-breaking ideas or visionary solutions that are required to solve the complex problems of today. At best, it’s a path of trying to catch up to competitors. True innovation sees, perceives and solves problems in new, creative ways. It requires a sense of purpose and imaginative thinking that can’t always be found using the same thinkers, no matter how smart they may be.
A plan for the unplanned
2. Some events are unforeseeable; random and unpredictable circumstances that cannot be anticipated. These events require us to find new ways of responding and adapting to them as they happen. Being innovative involves knowing how to think differently and analytically as well as learning how to look at the critical, creative and associative levels of an event as well. To see and respond to external crises (as well as opportunities) and to able to transform them into creative solutions that people value is why innovation is so vital to the health of a company.
Means of disruption
3. You can make the argument that there are no permanently excellent companies and that all organizations are the captains of their business’ fate based on the everyday strategic moves they make. Leading the charge for innovation within your company is can help improve productivity and build the value of your brand. It is also a tactical method for creating white space for disruptive, new and uncontested markets, staying ahead of competition and keeping at the forefront of challenging the boundaries of what’s possible for your business.
Running with technology
4. The advancement of digitization, largely impacted by the internet of things, has created an interconnection between digital devices, especially when it comes to sharing data. This connectivity and the resulting aggregation of data is creating entirely new business models and revenue streams for companies. It also is changing the basis of competition as companies can now compete as part of ecosystems. The internet of things allows for virtually endless opportunities and connections to take place, opening a whole new floodgate of innovative ideas that can develop to help grow your organization.
Respond to increasing customer expectations
5. Today customers have never had more control over who they are, what they do, and what, how and where they buy! Rising consumer expectations and choices are impacting organizations, forcing them to become increasingly customer centric through innovative change. By improving the user experience, companies are able to provide increased value, create inventive products and services as well as execute plans in ways that people value and cherish. Efforts to innovate demonstrate to consumers that companies understand and empathize with them and support their shifting lifestyle choices.
Innovation is central to the success of any business. Remember Blockbuster, Blackberry, MySpace? We’ve seen many brands that started out innovative but failed to continue to focus on innovation as a prominent part of their business strategy. As a result, they are no longer in their dominant place of power or worse yet, were run out of business. Businesses must take innovation seriously to stay competitive in the global marketplace. It is a strategic tool that helps companies outperform their competitors, create new markets, improve customers’ experiences and flourish in the age of disruption.
Learn more about LMCA’s subsidiary ProdigyWorks – a unique, high-IQ think tank that takes rare combinations of the world’s smartest and most creative thinkers and unleashes them on brands’ toughest innovation challenges.