October 31, 2013http://www.abtech.edu/sites/default/files/story-images/business_breakthrough_rule_3b.jpg
Innovation begins to slow when you start spending money. On a practical level, your have limited funds. Your cannot afford to make significant changes to your product. On an emotional level, you have a hard time being objective. Your business is like your baby. Your love your little creation, faults and all.
Innovation almost stops when you enter Phases Two and Three. There is no time to innovate. You are distracted working with customers and putting out fires. You slip from dream mode to survival mode.
The ultimate shock occurs when a new comptetitor joins your marketplace. They are still basking in the dream-glow of Phase Zero. It is upsetting when they claim your marketplace's innovative high ground. Your only consolation is that they too will be supplanted by an even newer player. It is a continuous market dynamic that affects almost every business that banks on its original big-bang innovation.
Key points to keep in mind:
- Startups have the luxury of time to analyze competition and develop their "secret sauce".
- Startups have money to spend on building their initial innovative idea.
- The owners are too busy serving customers to focus on innovation.
- The owners do not have the money to make expensive adjustments to their original investment in their business.
- The owners are too close to their original innovation. It is their baby. it is part of their soul.
1. How about you? Is your "secret sauce" innovation still fresh or is it getting stale?
2. How are competitor innovations impacting your business now?
3. Do you worry about losing your competitive edge?
4. What steps can you take in your business to create an innovative culture?