FOUR KEYS TO PRAGMATIC INNOVATION
“Pragmatic Innovation” is about innovation made real. Innovation efforts too often fail when leadership’s aspirations outstrip the capacity of the organization or good ideas can’t make it through the corporate gauntlet. We hear a lot about innovation as a system, a culture, a process or even a philosophy. But it’s often a simpler, more pragmatic approach to innovation that means the difference between failure and success.
What are the keys to pragmatic innovation?
START WITH PEOPLE: Innovation is about change, and people make change happen. Understanding the changing needs and values of both your customers and the people inside your company lets you connect the two to create a powerful drive for innovation.
SET REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS: Setting up for success means realistically evaluating how much innovation your organization can handle right now. How much risk can you take, and how much can you afford to invest? How quickly can you build new skills or change old behaviors? How far can your brand stretch into new categories?
DO WHAT IT TAKES TO BUILD SUPPORT: Even logical business people can have trouble understanding new ideas without experiencing them. Building support for your innovation often requires creativity – bringing executives to meet customers, developing new methods of testing, even creating full-scale immersion experiences to demonstrate the power of a new business concept.
STAY COMMITTED TO SEEING RESULTS: Not killing an idea that isn’t working is bad for innovation, but so is giving up too soon. It can take years for a new idea to make its way through the organization. Pragmatic innovators stick with good ideas, constantly look for ways to link them to business priorities, build networks of support over time, and remain committed to producing results for the business and for customers.