I firmly believe that the solutions to many (if not all) of our innovation problems are already out there somewhere; it's just that we need to get much better at finding them.
We all know that too much 'reinvention of the wheel' happens within all organisations. But in an ever more connected world, the core innovation skill set is now migrating away from invention capability, and more towards innovation search capabilities.
By way of illustration, take a look at this video below* (it's actually a public service ad but don't let that put you off). It's a nice pun on a similar ad earlier in the series which you may have seen recently at the cinema.
Did you spot all the changes? If you are like me you didn't even get close. We generally don't spot stuff if we don't focus on it, even if it's right before our eyes. And that's the problem. We are arguably too focussed on our work, projects, sectors to spot what's coming up in the slipstream.
The promise of openinnovation, namely of brighter, faster, cheaper innovation, is now coming of age. It's the organisations who engage pro actively and systematically with others, whether it's customers, suppliers, universities or clients, are beginning to see the returns on investment from this strategy.In other words all innovators and innovative organisations need to become better detectives, and be better able to spot what's happening outside of their immediate focus.
*Thanks to Paul Sloane for the link