I often hear people groan when I start to talk about innovation. This is especially true when I follow that up with innovation should be a systematized process.

The truth is innovation is a very sloppy process. You don’t go in one direction and yes, you can have a system to making any innovation process easier than you thought.

Today’s video is all about five things that could make your innovation process a breeze.

Transcript

I often hear people groan when I start to talk about innovation. This is especially true when I follow that up with innovation should be a systematized process.

The truth is innovation is a very sloppy thing. You don’t go in just one direction. You change directions several times and you can have a system and you need a system to making any innovation and process easier than you ever thought possible.

So today’s video is all about five things that make your innovation a breeze by using systemization and innovation together.

Here are a few things that I bet are true for you. One or two of them might even resonate.

  1. Number one, you want to find new ways to serve your clients. That’s a really important thing. If we don’t find new ways to serve our clients, guess what? They’re gonna leave us.
  2. You need new products to sell. You know, what you sold last week or last year probably isn’t what you’re gonna need to sell this week or next year.
  3. Number three, you need to find a way to keep your business afloat. You know, in what we’re going through right now, it’s the most challenging time I have ever seen for a business owner. Now, some businesses are doing really well, but most businesses have to make major changes in how they operate, what they serve, or even what they sell and how they sell it to keep their business afloat.
  4. And having an innovation process is an easy way to manage change in your company.

So here are some of the things that I’ve learned about innovation in my two or three zillion tries at being innovative.

  1. You know, the basis of any great innovation process is understanding fail fast, fail cheap. Now, I’ve talked about fail fast, fail cheap for many, many videos. Now, here’s the reason why this is so important. There’s a thing called sunk cost. Now, and what sunk cost basically means is the more effort you put into something, the harder it is for you to stop and move on from that, and innovation really is about managing failures, not about managing success ’cause the truth is when you’re trying to be innovative, you’re gonna lose many more times than you’re gonna win. You’re gonna fail many more times than you do it right. So if you’re putting tons and tons of effort into something to be done, there’s a good chance you’re not gonna want to get off it and you’re not gonna get off it until it’s too late.
  2. Number two, you have to be willing to make only small changes. You don’t want to be doing moon shots. Let’s leave the moon shots to Google. You know, the truth is they can have the resources to put tons of effort into something, but they don’t even let go of it after they’re convinced it doesn’t work anymore. It takes a lot of effort and usually somebody coming from the outside to say, enough, we’re done with this. Let’s stop, let’s move on. Now, if you’re making small changes and small experiments, it’s not a big deal to say, that didn’t work, let me try something different. That didn’t work, let me try something different. Oh, that did work, let’s keep it.
  3. You know, in the process that you’re doing, any innovation process, the key to this is what I call a retrospective meeting. That means, let’s say making a small experiment. I need to get together with my team and we need to talk about whether it worked or it didn’t work. If it did work, what made it work? And if it did work, what was the learning that we got from that? Because the truth is when something doesn’t work, it’s really a gift because it allows you to learn from that mistake and hopefully not make it again.
  4. Now, the fourth thing is make sure you learn from what didn’t work as well as what does work. It’s more important to learn from your mistakes than learn from getting it right. In fact, you really don’t learn much from getting it right. You learn a lot from the mistakes you make.
  5. And number five, and this is really important, you must, you must, you must, you must be willing to throw the losers away. The losers are losers. It’s okay to have losers. It’s nothing against you as a person. It doesn’t make you any worse as a person. It’s just it didn’t work.

Now, if you don’t do these things, there’s some bad things that might happen.

  • Your competition could leave you in the dust.
  • Your products could fall out of date or the worst,
  • your customers find you stale and they leave.

But if you do put in a great innovation process, here are some of the great things that you’re going to get.

  • You’ll be seen as being a leader in your industry. Now think about this for a second. Aren’t the leaders in your industry the ones who are being seen as being the most innovative?
  • You and your company are gonna be seen as being creative. Now, everybody wants to have creative solutions to the issues that they’re facing, and if your company can bring those creative solutions, you’re gonna be the winner more often than not.
  • Number three, you’re gonna have a repeatable process for innovating both internally and externally, and yes, innovation is about what you do inside your company as well as what you do outside of your company. Innovation is the way you run your company not just by creating new products, but if you have a repeatable process for managing how you do innovation, you can do it over and over and over again, and as they say, use the head and shoulders method. Rinse, wash, and repeat.
  • Number four, you’re gonna be able to adjust to rapidly-changing market conditions, and boy, if there ever was a time that it needed to be done, it’s right now.

So here are three things that I want you to do,

  1. Number one is, you might want to do it, you might not want to do it, but I’d like to have a call with me about your innovation process so we could have a short conversation about what’s working for you and what’s not. I might have an idea for you or two, and maybe I’ll learn something from you. Either way, it works out well for both of us.
  2. If you don’t want to talk, make sure you DOWNLOAD our Free infographic on the innovation process. It’ll show you the steps to take to get an innovation process put together in your company that’s systematized.
  3. And finally, put a systematized innovation process in your company. You don’t have to use what I do. You don’t have to use what I suggest, but make sure you have a process that’s systematized so you can repeat it over and over again.

You know, I’m hoping you’ll take a shot at using some of the things that I’ve talked about today. If you do, there’s a good chance you’ll move from not being a great innovator to being what I call an innovation ninja.

Hey, this is Josh Patrick. You’re at the Sustainable Business. Thanks a lot for stopping by. I hope to see you back here really soon.

Topics: Video, Sustainable Business, Innovation, retrospective meeting, small changes, industry leader, fail fast fail cheap, managing change, serving clients, new products

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