Books Slideshow: Ten Enemies of Innovation

By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 02-13-2012

Numbers Aren't Everything

Quick-win senior execs demand numbers for every decision, when innovation also requires qualitative analysis.

Numbers Aren't Everything

Fear of the Unknown

There's a constant demand for predictable success. Innovation thrives on the unforeseen.

Fear of the Unknown

Stinky Skunks

"Skunkworks" approach will select "chosen few" for innovation. Then expect them to do it as a part-time job.

Stinky Skunks

Failure to Plan

With little guidance given to designated teams, innovation is perceived as "knee jerk" reaction and eventually abandoned.

Failure to Plan

Follow the Money

CFOs grumble because there is no one department in which to allocate investment for innovation. A good excuse not to spend anything.

Follow the Money

Who Does What?

Leadership can't align innovation steps with day-to-day operations because they don't know how things get done.

Who Does What?

The Lean Machine

The constant push toward greater efficiencies means nobody has the time to think about innovation.

The Lean Machine

Fuzzy Definition

Not all innovation is the same. "Disruptive" innovation revolutionizes markets. "Open" innovation involves partner collaboration to develop ongoing ideas.

Fuzzy Definition

Foregone Conclusions

Early failures lead to ill-conceived conclusions such as "we don't have innovative people" or "innovation as a technique doesn't deliver."

Foregone Conclusions

What's the Incentive?

Other than "attaboys!" there's little career advancement or financial incentive for teams to pursue innovation.

What's the Incentive?