Why You Must Innovate

Innovation is no longer an option. It's vital to survival. Here's why.

A century ago, it took the telephone 75 years to hit 50 million users. It took the car 62 years, and TV 22 years to hit the same user base.

In comparison, YouTube and Facebook only needed four and three years respectively. Angry Birds took only 35 days.

With things changing faster than ever before, innovation is no longer optional: it is vital to survival.

The first graph shows that those who practice innovation will likely do better over time, be it a process, market or business innovation. Those who really hit the jackpot may even be the ones to disrupt the market themselves, creating something new and leading in the process. Apple and their iPhone are a clear example of this.


Without innovation, in absolute terms (the blue line) it may seem that the status quo is fine and that innovation is unnecessary. The reality quickly becomes apparent once we start comparing with our competitors and the external environment (the dotted orange line): if the competition is pursuing an innovation strategy, the status quo will quickly become un-competitive. These two lines basically tell the story of Kodak’s failure - a company which failed to innovate as their traditional markets moved from film to digital, and were being permanently disrupted.

So why should you innovate? To paraphrase Benjamin Franklin, “When you’ve finished changing, you’re finished.”

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Karn Bulsuk: Full Speed Ahead: Why You Must Innovate
Why You Must Innovate
Innovation is no longer an option. It's vital to survival. Here's why.
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Karn Bulsuk: Full Speed Ahead
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