Look anywhere and everywhere – you will find someone talking about innovation(me), someone listening to someone talk about innovation (you), someone innovating or someone googling on how to innovate and someone simply planning to innovate 🙂
Is Innovation a much touted hype?
Unfortunately yes. Innovation is now, simply put, a more convenient and blurred attempt at qualifying something that is not clear and yet, wanting to seem knowledgeable and being in vogue.
To draw a parallel, to all my fellow readers from the Indian sub continent, Innovation is analogous to the “Breaking News” you would see every minute and on all news channels. The content would be the same for any given 24 hour period!
Breaking News no longer holds its initial charm as does Innovation now. Both are a victim to overuse and suffer the same apathy today.
As with other fast selling in-vogue words / concepts, Innovation too has caught the fancy of everyone and is already becoming one of the most overly used words and may soon be black listed / removed from populist usage.
Check any large sized company’s annual report and you will be surprised at the number of occurrences of this word. There are comparisons that also indicate that irrespective of the nature of these companies (tech, retail, consumer goods etc), they all exhibit (scarily) similar fascination for this keyword, leading me to believe that we now have a new issue to deal with – hyper innovation syndrome, globally.
Wall Street Journal in a great article† (online), referred to Innovation as in danger of becoming a cliché (if not already).
Are we really in the need to innovate today, or can’t we simply apply more common sense?
In the earlier periods – 18th, 19th or even the 20th century, innovations were usually inventions. Getting into the 21st century, the more practical way of showing innovative’ness would be to embrace (& implement) common sense / lateral /out of the box thinking.
Right, so what choice do we have (as an alternative)? Maybe it is time to revive a now obsolete cousin of innovation – Novation or look at Excogitation perhaps? 🙂
†WSJ article: Wall Street Journal – Article on Innovation