|HOW TO INNOVATE|
Aruba. February 1, 2016 - Let’s start by defining what innovation is. To me, innovation is the process of creating something new that makes life better. Innovation is impossible without passion. Innovators see the world differently. We see the world as it should be as opposed to seeing the world as it is. And we’re entirely restless until we see that better world become real. We are the crazy ones.
Innovators end up becoming obsessed with taking the world from as it is to as it should be. They become obsessed with making the world better. Many innovators in the for-profit sector focus incessantly on bringing value to market. Others focus incessantly on the core research needed to push the human race forward. Regardless of the sectors we play in, we are all relentlessly focused on solving problems and creating a better world than the one that exists today.
Examples of Today’s Innovators
I’ll share with you four quick profiles of some of my favorite contemporary innovators.
Jack Andraka was only born in 1997, but by the age of 15 he has already changed the world with his innovation. Andraka has developed a new way to detect pancreatic, ovarian, and lung cancer during early stages when there is a much higher likelihood of a cure. His inexpensive method, which could save countless lives, won the 2012 Gordon E. Moore Award, the grand prize of the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.
Eesha Khare is another impressive young innovator, who at the age of 18 created a tiny device that could charge a mobile phone in 20-30 seconds—a revolutionary technology she calls a “super-capacitor.” She won the 2013 Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award for her invention, and plans to use the prize money to pay for her tuition at Harvard and continue her work as an inventor.A Five-Step Innovation Process
Let me share six keys to innovation that, regardless whether you’re in a government organization or a non-profit organization or in the private sector working as part of a business, can enable you to innovate and create something new that makes the world better.
1.Define the problem very clearly. Oftentimes if you’re not having a clear idea of the change you’re trying to make, it’s harder to think about the solutions.
2.Throw out as many constraints to your thinking as possible. Enter into a safe area where you don’t have constraints, where you feel like you’re not being judged, where you can throw out all the constraints to your thinking. You want to be with a group of people whom you know and with whom you can just be silly, be yourself, and be creative. As often as you can, throw out constraints to your thinking and put yourself in a very comfortable environment.