Sustaining is Pivotal to Making Innovation Progress

The greater challenge today with innovation is to build a more sustaining framework for innovation to be consistent, like a beating heart, day in and day out.

The struggle is what constitutes the right areas to frame and build innovation capability upon? I argued last year in one of my previous blogs there was a formula. If you go to “A Formula for Sustaining Competitive Advantage through Innovation” at it introduces this.

Now we need to align this further.

The Formula for Sustaining Competitive Advantage

Taking this one step further and linking it.

I have repeatedly suggested innovation needs to be dynamic, where you need to understand your fitness landscape (see blog and that relate on this ground breaking concept.

A sustainable innovative organization needs to be extremely fluid and “organic” in the way it treats innovation to foster constant creativity that is vital for the success of its future growth and wealth creation. Some thoughts:

  1. It has to work out ways to creating value, Besides encouraging ideas that can come from anywhere, inside and outside the organization it has to invest in its cultivation process, as ideas have to add value, they have to connect to the strategic need of the business
  2. Innovation is a Dynamic process: Innovation for the company is as “oxygen”, it is the life blood and this has to be delivered constantly to all cells and bodies,  not just for survival but for obtaining fitness and then begins to achieve this sustaining itself as part of a natural routine.
  3. Innovation is part of the recognition that business is not as usual, or achieved by approaching challenges in the market place through past tried and tested ways. We need to think differently to thrive let alone survive. Perspectives have to be broadened out and challenged more. The organization needs to invest in its people constantly to ensure the possibilities of achieving a healthier future. We need improved capabilities.
  4. We need inclusive thinking both internally and connecting externally. Many are realizing the incredible benefits of moving more towards insight-driven innovation that promotes, stimulates and drives the innovation process. I’ve commented on a few of these previously.
  5. Insightful-driven innovation comes from opening up to diverse views, internally and externally, and we need to ‘push’ closer to the edge of possibilities. To do this we need our people to be confident to translate what they pick up as often a ‘faint signal’ and translate this into actions and opportunities to explore within the innovation process with increasing confidence and all the best possible support.
  6. To encourage this we need sustaining and clear leadership. People want to be inspired, to understand a vision and feel they are very much part of the future. We all seek identification. Executing through a framework of activities that promote learning, improve competencies, promote latent energies and provide intensity of purpose are all far more exciting to be part of than the many remote leadership models we often see today who lack responsiveness and empathy.
  7. To achieve this new sustaining point, we need to measure innovation, not as a ‘nice to have’ but as an ‘essential to have’, a core aspect of employment. To achieve this we need to build around a ‘given’ framework, one that multiplies and leads to sustaining competitive advantage by adding II + EE + MLC + OC + RNE to equal = SCA.

The suggested organizing SCA framework has a number of sub components that make up each of its parts. I am certainly happy to expand on this through my practice on innovation. You have the contact details if you are interested. We do need to move beyond the present, more static confines of innovation.

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