Igniting Innovation

Igniting InnovationLast night I was privileged to attend and present at IgnitePrinceton, one of the global Ignite events which takes place in over 100 cities at certain times of the year.  These events have been known to attract up to 12,000 entrepreneurs, technologists, DIYers, and creative professionals.  Princeton’s event is hosted by #innochat co-moderator, Drew Marshall, the founder and Principal of Primed Associates, LLC, a company focused on innovation management and consulting.  I make the trek to Princeton, to rub elbows with others who are energized by sharing ideas, innovation, and never tire of discussing possibilities.  As per Ignite fashion, Drew opens up the events by asking presenters to be brief, be brilliant and be gone.  The opening line that I never tire of is “you are not your job!” -  those are the words that set the tone to listen for new signals in the market place.

Events like TED and Ignite not only bring new ideas to the table, but innovative models of how to feature unique content concisely in a creative and energetic environment.  These events are a gathering place for the curious, the democratization of ideas, and sparking the inner vision.  As I was listening to one the speakers emphasize how ‘meetings’ do not make decisions, leaders do, I began to reflect on how innovation is encouraged in the robust life sciences.  Are we listening to other viewpoints, and the right companies in this rapidly changing business environment and what are the intersections points for engaging inside and outside of our industry?

Perhaps smaller companies are better equipped to pursue new knowledge, collaborate and build upon new ideas.  Agile companies that have the capability and mindset to proactively innovate succeed because they can respond to the velocity of this market.  The healthcare ecosystem is extremely complex with shareholders stemming from patients to investors and taking an idea to market is part of what Ignite calls, “raising the collective IQ.”   Which is a good thing considering that The Global Innovation Index is an index that measures innovation of countries and the United States ranked number nine internationally from reports on performance and what companies should be doing to spur innovation.  Which is why we need to be rooting for those companies with new ideas and organizations fostering the sharing of ideas.  While I am always rooting for the innovator and entrepreneur, I do not want to see the larger, more behemoth companies fail in this industry, even though they may be struggling to own and control their future.

image credit: pbsworks.com

Resources: by The Boston Consulting Group and National Association of Manufacturers jointly produced the index; The International Innovation Index is part of a large research study that looked at both the business outcomes of innovation and government’s ability to encourage and support innovation through public policy.

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LeAnna CareyLeAnna Carey is the Healthcare Editor for Innovation Excellence, the principal of TheHealthMaven, LLC, and co-founder of a mobile healthcare company, AuraViva. Lea hosts a radio show and can be found on iTunes where she interviews healthcare entrepreneurs and innovators at http://thehealthmavenblog.com/.

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