Author Archives: Jeffrey Phillips

The Problems Measuring Innovation

There are tasks we want to do that are reasonable to do and are practical to do. There are activities we want to do that are sensible but difficult to accomplish. Measuring innovation, which sounds important and reasonable, often falls in the second category. Continue reading

Posted in Growth, Innovation, Management, Strategy | 4 Comments
People Are Our Most Important Asset

Mark Twain once wrote that there are lies, damn lies, and statistics. I think to that list we can add mindless platitudes, like the one that headlines this post. I’ve never worked in or for a business that didn’t suggest that people were important to its success. Continue reading

Posted in Innovation, People & Skills, Strategy | 2 Comments
Idea Construction

I’m interested in dispelling a commonly held myth today, the myth that suggests ideas are created once, whole and complete. Ideas aren’t found, they don’t emerge. Good ideas, the ones that get implemented and converted into new ideas, are constructed. Continue reading

Posted in Creativity, Growth, Innovation, Processes & Tools, Strategy | 3 Comments
Innovation the Tom Sawyer Way

Over the last few years I’ve noticed a continuing discussion in many organizations about the origin of ideas. Should the ideas they commercialize originate from inside the organization, outside the organization or both. So far few executives have cast their vote for “neither”. Continue reading

Posted in Build Capability, Growth, Innovation, Management, Strategy | 2 Comments
What The Karate Kid Teaches Us About Innovation

When you start an innovation activity, don’t spend time looking for the method or tool or framework that promises immediate results that won’t fail. Spend time developing skills on basic innovation tools – like trend spotting, gathering customer needs, creative thinking, idea generation and so forth. Continue reading

Posted in Innovation, People & Skills, Processes & Tools | 5 Comments
Why Corporate Innovation Is So Difficult

We innovators need to learn to be careful with our language. Too often I hear people conflating words like innovation, invention and entrepreneurship. The fact is that these are all intertwined but subtly different words with very different challenges. Continue reading

Posted in Build Capability, Entrepreneurship, Growth, Innovation, Leadership & Infrastructure, Strategy | 2 Comments
Why Innovators Make Terrible Firefighters

Let me first acknowledge that this post has nothing to do with real firefighters – you know, the guys who actually risk their lives in burning buildings. This post has to do with business “fire fighters”, those mid and senior level executives who rush into “critical” situations to clean up terrible customer service or rush to fill a product gap. Continue reading

Posted in Growth, Innovation, Leadership & Infrastructure, Management, Strategy | 2 Comments