from the Irish Times.
Eight habits of highly effective innovators
In his book Big Little Breakthroughs, Linkner notes the characteristics of successful innovators and offers the following advice:
1. Fall in love with the problem Rather than focusing on a specific solution, take time to carefully examine and understand the challenge at hand. This means being more committed to solving the problem than to a particular manner of solving it and remaining flexible and open-minded in order to find the optimal approach.
2. Start before you’re ready Everyday innovators take the initiative to get started now instead of waiting for permission, detailed instructions, or ideal conditions. They are willing to course-correct along the way, adapt to changing circumstances in real time, and operate with agility.
3. Open a test kitchen Innovation is both strengthened and de-risked through experimentation. By building a framework and conditions for testing and creative exploration, ideas are cultivated and optimised.
4. Break it to fix it Ditching the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” maxim, everyday innovators proactively deconstruct, examine, and rebuild to deliver superior products, systems, processes and works of art.
5. Reach for weird Preferring the unexpected approaches to the obvious ones, everyday innovators challenge conventional wisdom by searching for unorthodox ideas. They have a penchant for discovering oddball, sometimes even bizarre ideas in order to discover better outcomes.
6. Use every drop of toothpaste Take a scrappy approach of doing more with less. Counterintuitively, being resource-constrained can fuel creative breakthroughs. Resourcefulness and ingenuity become powerful weapons in the fight for superior innovation.
7. Don’t forget the dinner mint Adding small, creative flourishes can yield significantly improved results. An extra dose of surprise and delight enables new invention and competitive edge.
8. Fall seven times, stand eight Realising that setbacks are inevitable, everyday innovators use creative resilience to overcome adversity. Mistakes are a natural and important part of the innovation process and can be flipped into advantages when studied and embraced.