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  Innovation needn’t be confusing. It’s the most controllable thing that business can do to generate continual sources of renewal. Whether it’s developing new products, processes, services or ways of doing business, doing new things and doing them well is essential not only for a company to survive but to thrive.

So what’s the problem? In some companies innovation is the domain of research and development. Other businesses approach innovation as an event: a brainstorming session an annual strategy meeting or on offside workshop.

It isn’t.

The innovation gap: the seven things companies do wrong…

Take a minute to think about your organization and how it deploys innovation. Research shows there to be a number of performance issues – the seven innovation gaps.

  1. Strategies that pull in different directions or exist in open conflict? Innovation strategy should guide what people do every day.
  2. Is the new product line running on empty or is the agenda about getter better results from innovation investment?
  3. Does the senior leadership constantly reinforce the positive innovation activities and is it consistent with what they say and do every day?
  4. Are innovation projects going more wrong than right? How are you managing the risk?
  5. Are your staff skilled in innovation management tools and techniques?
  6. Is the business operating “Closed”? Are collaboration projects with external partners delivering the results?
  7. Is creative leadership something you do around here? A critical leadership skill in the 21st Century.

So what can you do about this to change direction and to boost performance?

My own research and numerous other studies show that the way to break the cycle of failing projects is to build and continually refine the innovation capability of an organization.

I call it, Building a Growth Engine. 

Call me to find out how we can build your own engine of growth.

Reproduced from my article in NEPIC’s Focal Point Newsletter, Issue 53 July 2015

Rob Munro

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