How Will Innovation Impact Your Career and Income?
We all love and hate innovation. It keeps things moving and is exciting, until we find we are still inside the box when and the world is outside. In this podcast, we explore innovations and how we can be ahead of them and avoid being surprised and unemployed.
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Observations About Innovative Ideas
- Innovative products and services may be hard to explain. Hindsight might be 20/20, but when we see innovation, we often do not know what to do with it. Examples of those that might have initially been hard to explain are the Apple iPad, Twitter, and even our IEM graduate program.
- Small companies are usually the innovators – not large companies. With the exception of companies like Apple, large companies rarely innovate. Instead, larger companies buy innovation when it becomes mature enough to show a return on investment (ROI).
- Innovation often comes into the market as a low cost alternative. Sometimes we might even say a low quality alternative. The Japanese hit the US auto market with small and low cost products. Today, we see the world of low cost apps taking over the space once held by the large software packages such as MS Office.
Five Things You Can Do to Get Ahead of Innovation
- Look outside your circle via travel or just paying attention to the world around you. Jim Rogers travelled the world to spot innovations. You might not be able to do that easily, but you can certainly pay attention to the world around you. We often observe without thinking.
- Pay attention to the toys. Toys today often become major market players tomorrow. Examples include computers, and Facebook in the past. Today, as toys, we see remote controlled WIFI helicopters and integrated games with virtual reality. You should play with toys (and your kids).
- Pay attention to those groups with big budgets and no required ROI (DOD, NASA, etc). These large agencies (and sometimes company labs) get to play more. While much of the play may be wasted tax dollars, some real gems come out. Today we see these agencies using drones, remote monitoring, and sensing technologies. Soon, they will be a major force in the market.
- Read or scan more. Be more observant. Use feedly for this. Scan things outside of your interest or expertise area. Be curious.
- Schedule time to think. Yes, I said schedule it. We rarely think. Consider that kids get creative when they are bored and have nothing to do. You too should get creative with your mind. Take time to play and discover. Take time to ask “what life will be like if…?”.
My Predictions of Future Disruptive Innovations
- New medical issues related to social media and connectivity.
- New types of ADD
- New repetitive motion injuries
- Depression on the rise due to disconnected lives (or over-connected)
- Nano technologies will prevail
- Nano based paint will allow you to change the color of a wall on command.
- With nano materials and wireless tech, we might be able to paint electronics. TV on wall paint.
- Sensing what others are doing
- Personal Drones – Take out remote controlled helicopter and WIFI and then you have your own drone.
- New forms of security
- Traffic monitoring via personal drones flying ahead of me
- Drone legislation to control business use
- 3D Printing Mainstream
- Instead of selling stuff people will sell designs and information. The design file more critical than the part.
- Pizza on the download.
- Cars that fly. Already see these in some applications for remote missionaries.
- IClothing. Can you do a lot of the above with your iPhone and your clothing?
- TV/Phone/Computer now
- Soon converge with 3D printer and appliances
Resources mentioned in the show
- The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change the Way You Do Business by Clayton M. Christensen
- Seeing What’s Next: Using Theories of Innovation to Predict Industry Change by Clayton M. Christensen
- Reverse Innovation: Create Far From Home, Win Everywhere by Vijay Govindarajan
- Disruptive Innovation: What Every Business Leader Should Know by Percy Agreras Dastur
Questions: What Am I Missing? What Else Can We Do? What Do You Predict?
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