Not as far as I’m concerned.
For as long as I can remember it’s always dawned on me that late adopters are not innovative. I mean, how could they be if they are not curious. I know, I know. Sometimes being late to the game is great. There are hundreds of examples of companies that were late to the game and ended up changing the game. Apple, Google and Facebook immediately come to mind.
But I think that curiosity drives the kind of creativity that leads to breakthroughs. To breakthroughs that create value. A simple formula I have is:
Curiosity = Value creation
Creativity and curiosity go hand in hand. But, being creative doesn’t mean you’ll innovate. To innovate requires that you really want to create value. It requires both leadership and management skills. But most of all, in my opinion, it requires conviction.
You have to be able, without a doubt, stand up for what you believe in. People should be able to see this in your expression and body language. They should be able to feel it.
I know a handful of creatives who are not innovative because they don’t have the conviction and guts to stand up for what they believe in. They don’t have the guts to keep going. You can be creative, but if you don’t have the growth mindset it just isn’t going to work out.
Now, the world has a funny way of working. Value creation happens in groups. In a team. So there will be/are people who are not curious, but follow someone who is. This is leadership 101 and it makes sense. They key is influencing others to be curious.
I do believe that all people are curious, but on different levels. Bottom line is innovators are novelty addicts. I consider myself one. Just to give you an example of what I mean, I’ve been using Firefox since version 0.3, back when it was called Phoenix. And haven’t switched to Chrome. There are a handful of other products which I’ve beta tested before they were out on the market. That is a clear sign of novelty addiction.
Also observing your peers can tell you a lot too. For example one of my best friends, a fellow techie, only started using Firefox about three years ago! Jokingly I call him a laggard.
What do you think, can you create value if you’re not curious?
- Do You Really Encourage Innovation & Creativity? (inc.com)
- The Future Belongs to the Curious: A Manifesto for Curiosity (brainpickings.org)
- Creativity Does Not Equal Innovation (vistage.com)