A quick little video hit on innovation from Las Vegas.
If you want to innovate, you must take risks!
What’s the future of research & development? That’s what the global paints, coatings and materials firm PPG brought me in for as they assembled their global R&D team for an offsite event at the famed Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh – what a site for an event! My keynote, designed to kick off their two day event and set the proper tone for their meeting of minds, took a look at how to compete in the high velocity economy when the nature R&D is changing. Edge based innovation, open innovation concepts, grand challenges such as the Prize – I helped them to understand how the phrase “the future isn’t invented here anymore” is no longer just a phrase, but an opportunity!
This graph represents the model of product life cycles as taught in business schools for the last, oh, I don’t know, 100 years?
Companies would innovate, and introduce a new product. If it succeeded, they would experience growth. At some point, sales would peak. The product would then tend to become obsolete or overtaken by competitors, and sales would decline.
What a quaint model. Too bad it bears no resemblance to todays’ reality. Many industries are now finding that product obsolescence now occurs during the growth stage; in the hi-tech industry, the “decline” phase caused by instant obsolescence can even occur during the introduction,
Back in June, I was the opening speaker for the Consumer Electronics Association CEO Summit in Ojai, California, and spoke to this trend. At the time, Lenovo had just pulled the plug on a pad-like product, even before it was released, because it was obvious that its’ limited feature set had already made it irrelevant and obsolete in a very fast paced market.
The reality of today’s market is that of instant obsolescence, and if you want to master innovation, you need to think about how your own product life cycle is changing.
Here’s a video take that is worth watching on the trend:
What do you get when you bring 700 mayors and elected officials for small, medium and large sized towns from the State of Utah into a room for a talk about the future? My main theory in action: some people see the the future and see a threat; other people see the same future and see an opportunity! My keynote took a look at the future drivers of economic development: from advanced manufacturing, disruptive business models, knowledge accelerators and the nomadic workforce.
It has been an extraordinarily difficult summer. My wife, two teenage sons and I were due to take a three week vacation to Europe in early August. Two days before we were due to leave, my mother in law had a massive heart attack and stroke; she died several days later. She was 90 years old and in failing health; although we expected a complex situation at some time, we still found ourselves in a state of shock.
The rest of the month was mostly taken up by moving my wife’s father into an assisted living apartment; he spent about a month living with us directly after the funeral. Time has mostly been a blur.
I’ve marvelled in the strength and inspiration of my wife and sons during this last month as they rallied through very difficult circumstances. It has been extraordinary time.
In any event, it’s great to be back in the office. I have a full set of keynotes lined up in the next several weeks, all of which provide opportunities to share more insight on innovative thinking.
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