Tag Archives: collaboration

One trait that determines success of your entrepreneurial ecosystem

pay it forwardThough most everyone agrees on what the basic components of an entrepreneurial ecosystem are, it is a myth that simply having those components will result in game-changing innovation.

For example, think about Silicon Valley, the use case for all innovation ecosystems; why and how does it sustain innovation? Sure, culture is one component. But, what distinct behaviors drive that? I believe the most important one is a “paying it forward” attitude.

Innovation needs outsiders. Here’s how to source them

imagine

The most interesting ideas, the ones that span boundaries, are found and at the intersection of domains. This isn’t a new insight, but it is one that is rarely taken into account inside most businesses.

True to form, established businesses suffer from the Curse of Knowledge: I already know what I need to know. The expertise on which they built their business blinds organizations from creating the future, it’s the reason many businesses that were thriving at the beginning of this century are no longer with us.

How do you break free from the Curse of Knowledge?

By shifting perspective…

What To Look For In An Innovation Partner

finding the right innovation partnerIf you’re a successful company, you’re probably not used to innovation. You’re used to being good at what you do, and that’s the opposite of innovation. Smart innovation that evolves a new and marketable product often requires an innovation partner.

There are a lot of reasons for that. But they boil down to a deceptively simple concept:

Two heads think better than one.

What kills most innovation isn’t a lack of ideas, it’s a lack of relationships

Do we still need old-fashioned physical offices to do work?

Contrary to reports that the demise of the office is near, I believe we still need physical offices; and more importantly physical interactions. I believe that the model that will be dominant for most types of organizations is a hybrid between being a mobile worker and being at a physical office.

Interstellar: the power of an unlikely collaboration yields scientific discovery

interstellar wormhole

Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar is a fantastic movie, science and fantasy will entertain you. Go watch it!

But this blog isn’t about the movie per se, it is about how they made both the worm hole and black hole models realistic. This is the classic case of a happy accident where none of the collaborators knew what was going to happen when they brought their collective talents together.

Interactions, not individuals, drive breakthroughs

A key skill all innovators have is the ability to network with the objective of developing ideas, finding collaborators, bouncing ideas off others and overall just building their ideas. Rather than being individualists, innovators are collaborators. They understand that it takes a diverse community of people working on a single problem to drive breakthroughs; as opposed to a single hardworking individual:

Is too much collaboration bad for innovation?

Is too much collaboration bad for innovation?

All great achievements came about through collaboration. But, sometimes too much collaboration inhibits our ability to think creatively.

Last week’s post about what impedes employees from being innovative in the workplace generated some discussion. My point that managers, meetings, emails and phone calls get in the way of inspiration was not well received because those are mechanisms we use to move ideas forward.

Yes, but most of the time you are not moving ideas forward because of those mechanisms. Rather, those mechanisms exist to keep “business-as-usual” in place.