Where does Innovation come from?

Like most organizations, we are talking a lot internally about Innovation – the Great Ideas that will transform the company and deliver top-line revenue and high-value earnings growth. The trick, of course, if figuring out how to make that Innovation happen – as if you could plan it out in advance, on schedule to make your quarter-end.

It’s not that easy – but then again, maybe it’s not that hard. Check out this video from Steven Johnson – another terrific RSA Animate short – on where those Good Ideas come from …


Breakthrough ideas often have to incubate for some time – cooking together with other ideas to become something that is at once impactful and actionable.

IT Opportunity: Johnson talks about the importance of how the Internet has enabled more connections, allowing multiple chances for our Slow Hunches to combine into breakthrough ideas. However, since you probably want to keep those great ideas within the four walls of your company – best option is to establish Collaboration Spaces on your intranet.

Corporate Challenge: The funny thing is – the technology doesn’t matter that much! The hard part is getting folks to actually engage in the sharing. For manufacturing companies especially, where Lean thinking has driven out all waste – how exactly do you justify “play time” and idea sharing?

Maybe the video above will help loosen up some thinking …

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James MacLennan

... is the Managing Partner at Maker Turtle LLC, a digital consultancy focused on creating value in ways that align with your strategy and drive engagement with employees, customers, and stakeholders. He is an active creator, providing thought leadership through on-line & print publications, and public speaking / keynotes.