Innovate, change or alter something, introducing new features. This is how the dictionary of the real academy defines this word so repeated and with such insistence in these times. There is no doubt that innovation can be redefined in many ways and in fact, it is done and interpreted that way, but if we want to simplify the definitions and make them understand in a simple way, we could say that it is the process of redoing, reinventing something in a different, efficient way that adds value. Think different, act different, reinvent yourself, anticipate, imagine, dream and carry it out with all the passion you are capable of showing.
These have been the keys to the success of some visionaries of the 20th. century, but also that of man throughout the development of its history, however only a select few are on the list of geniuses. Innovation is permanently linked to the evolution of man and it is enough to look around us in an instant of our life, on a street or in an office and look at the elements that surround us and that just a few years ago did not exist and even were unimaginable to think of its single existence in the near future like today.
And it is the “imagination” that allows us to dream of a new world and innovation that materializes it and turns it into reality. These being the key pieces for the beginning of a new cycle, where integrity, intuition, responsibility and creative thinking will be a benchmark for the new visionary companies of the 21st century.
In this minimal corner of the cyber-space, we are going to unravel the keys to Innovation, the barriers we encounter on a daily basis, the potential solutions and the escape routes, in order to come up with a mini guide for entrepreneurs who have decided to reinvent themselves or reinvent their business, promoting innovation at critical points in the value chain of their businesses.
However, over the last few years, it has become clear that beyond innovation there is entrepreneurship. And it is vitally important to understand that “Innovation” has no value until you are able to create a business model around this idea and turn it into a product or service ready to be sold. If you are not able to turn an “Idea” into something that creates customers, this does not work.
And that is when the figure of the entrepreneur makes sense. And that is why it is important to clearly identify and differentiate between innovators and entrepreneurs.
An “Innovator” is fundamentally a creator, a person capable of solving or solving problems in a creative and differential way, with great passion for constant improvement. Innovators are fundamentally thinkers. But an “Entrepreneur” is oriented to action, to the construction or materialization of things. This includes the development of a business around an innovative idea, for its subsequent materialization.
Therefore, when an “innovator” approaches us, with that special sparkle in his eyes and says: !!! I have a great idea!!!.
The entrepreneur’s response is immediate: Can we materialize and monetize it? Who is your target customer? What is the business model? Why will customers go crazy with your product?
Investing in Innovation without a developed entrepreneurship model is like throwing flowers into the sea, they will never grow.
Carlos J. Ochoa Fernández ©