Innovation and Creativity Overview

Innovation and creativity are amongst the most important drivers of business growth and never has this been more the case than in the saturated, rapidly-evolving markets of the 21st century. Disregarding these ideas, as current consumers do not use them and they may not make immediate returns can have catastrophic consequences. This decision making strategy is best described by Christensen’s (1997) ‘The Innovator’s Dilemma’.

Creating a product or service that pushes the boundaries further than your competitors or opens a previously unexplored market can have substantial returns. The rise and market dominance of Apple is an example of the impact successful innovation can have.

The two most commonly discussed types of innovation are radical innovation and incremental innovation. Despite being very different techniques, both have historically produced huge successes. Radical innovation describes a dramatic change that often transforms a market, whereas incremental innovation relies on gradual improvements to existing products.

As a manager the key to successful innovation is not only to practice it yourself, but also to create an environment where your employees feel to experiment, this is known as a creativity culture or corporate entrepreneurship.

In order to remain relevant in a competitive marketplace innovation and creative thought is essential and strong leadership, by allowing freedom of thought, is the strongest enabler of this process.

Christensen, C. (1997). The innovator’s dilemma. Boston, Mass.: Harvard Business School Press.