10 Signs That Your Business Is Distinctive

There is so much noise in today’s markets, and customers have so much choice and so little time, that if you aren’t distinctive – and distinctively better – you have no cut through. And if that’s the case, then you simply end up competing on price. The likes of...

Gozo, Google and Growth

As part of our holiday to Gozo, the island that neighbours Malta in the sparkling, azure Mediterranean Sea, we visited a local farm. Martin, the farmer, proudly showed us the series of terraces, water tanks, pumps, pipes and channels that irrigate his orange and lemon...

Three Ways To Create New Business Ideas

Brainstorming has such a bad name, perhaps, as a result of sessions where everyone is asked to a meeting room and then requested to generate ideas from the top of their minds. This approach can generate some ideas, but for many people more stimuli are needed to really...

Top 10 Innovation Killers

I have previously written elsewhere about 5 innovation killers, but have been thinking further on this subject and have now identified 10 organisational and management factors that I believe prevent companies from reaching their innovation potential. Professional...

10 Sources Of New Growth Ideas

New applications for existing technologies. Sir James Dyson’s bag-less vacuum cleaner technology was inspired by the way a local sawmill used a giant cyclone to lift and remove sawdust from the air. Combine disparate technologies. Apple’s iPod and iTunes, brought...

Play Your Own Zune

I read in this morning’s FT that the Zune is to be taken off the market. You know, the Zune. What do you mean, you’ve never heard of it? Actually, I’m not totally surprised the Zune may have passed you by, but it is/was Microsoft’s response to Apple’s iTunes and iPod....

The Art Of Prototyping

I had the good fortune to spend a couple of hours at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art on Saturday. My favourite area of the gallery is the impressionist section. You may think that impressionist artists just went straight to the finished work, but their...

Sources Of Growth In Turbulent Times

In periods of economic and social turbulence, it can be tempting to wait for the latest wave of change to hit the shores of your business before deciding where to focus. But the frequency and ferocity of these waves continue to increase, and you therefore run the risk...

New! Fast-Lane Innovation Booklet

I am delighted to announce the publication of my new booklet, Fast-Lane Innovation: How To Accelerate Growth And Leave The Competition Behind. This 43-page booklet helps business leaders make innovation a way of life. It provides insights, case studies and models to...

No Empowerment = No Innovation

No business can continuously and consistently deliver exciting new innovations without the drive, commitment and creativity of its people. As businesses grow, however, the entrepreneurialism that characterised its initial success can be ground down by the...

Are You An Integrated Innovator?

Strategic advances are made when organisations become the first to find a profitable way to exploit new opportunities. These opportunities may be created by changes in customer tastes, technology, economics or other external factors, or, more likely, a combination of...

Innovation: Exploit The Unexpected

Managers value predictability; it gives them a sense of control over external events. In my experience, results that do not match initial expectations are not normally welcomed, and actions are quickly put in place to restore performance to expected levels. Even...

Mind The Gaps

If you are doing little to find solutions to your customers’ unmet, and often unspoken needs, you will be unlikely to transform your business performance. Transformational innovation occurs when a business finds a way to meet a need that customers didn’t know they...

Focus Your Innovation On What Won’t Change

Most companies build their strategy by focussing on the latest market changes and dynamics and extrapolating their impact into the future. But this approach has a big problem. The pace and scale of change in the business and financial environment continues to...