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Ten Types of Innovation: A 360 Degree View of What Makes an Exponential Impact

10 February 2015


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Innovation is about discipline, not creativity, says Keeley

Individuals, companies and governments that have strategic and measurable goals are more likely to succeed than those without, because successful innovation is not about creativity but about discipline, said Larry Keeley, innovation consultant and co-founder of the US-based innovation strategy firm Doblin, at The Government Summit 2015.

"Leaders keep looking for a simple fix to their innovation challenges. Succeeding at innovation is systemic. It deserves and rewards discipline," said Keeley in an address titled ‘Ten Types of Innovation: A 360 Degree View of What Makes an Exponential Impact’.

Most organizations believe innovation is all about creativity, but this is nonsense, Keeley said. Governments that have measurable innovation goals have a higher success rate.

Keeley said American industrialist Henry Ford's car manufacturing business was meant to displace horses and he succeeded by learning to sell cars through dealers rather than individuals. The mass production of affordable vehicles in the US among the middle class was, thus, born.

Like Ford, successful entrepreneurs of the modern era, like the people behind technology and social media giants Google, Facebook, Flickr, and Twitter, among others, were cognizant of the exponential impact their products and services would have on the masses.

With innovation in technology moving at a greater pace, smarter moves are necessary to keep up with the times, Keeley said.

In the 21st century, Keeley believes government will play a major role in boosting the economy through technology and innovation, as opposed to the 20th century, when private individuals revolutionized our lives.

His 10 types of innovation are: profit model, company network, company structure, company process, product, product performance, customer service, customer channel, innovative branding, and customer engagement. These, he said, are vital to achieving measurable goals regardless of whether it's in business or government innovation.