INNOVATION – Key to Human Survival
Since time immemorial, we have seen innovations leaving imprints in all spheres of life, thereby enabling humankind to reach major milestones of evolution…. and how?
Let’s go back to prehistoric times, and we will find that the first signs of experiments came along with the first bite that Adam and Eve took of the forbidden apple. These experiments, which included human errors, marked several inadvertent innovations.
But in no time, these innovations began wheeling on, encompassing resolve, persistence and purpose. Their importance grew by leaps and bounds and let them carve out a niche of their own. And today, we witness technologies and discoveries around us coming of age.
Why do we need innovations?
Well, the answer lies simply in understanding why staying relevant is important. Let’s take a look at the basic yet the most crucial reasons as to what innovation is meant for:
- Improved Efficiency
- Improved Safety
- Ease of Compliance
- Improved Productivity
Where to bring innovations?
- To push their boundaries and tap their highest potential
- To create an identity and be recognized as the go-to brand
- To stand out amongst the competitors
This largely touches upon the fact that most businesses swear by the ‘survival of the fittest mantra in today’s fast-growing competitiveness and dynamism. Hence, they ensure that they stay abreast of the technological advancements and curate innovations that spell uniqueness and better cognizance of the job at hand.
Uncovering the Hidden Innovations
To keep pace with innovation and bring in novelty, a few vital points must be kept in mind to give businesses a major boost and ensure that they stay up and running!
- Being in tune with innovation – Innovation is not something that will become tangible in a day, but consistent brainstorming is a stepping stone for innovative progression. Remember, every thought counts!
- Innovation is unstoppable – Much like the arithmetic numbers that go till infinity, treating innovation as the numeric one would ensure that adding even a minuscule value to innovation can help surpass the set business standards.
- Uncomplicated innovation – Although innovation knows no bounds, it is worthwhile to measure its utility and practicality beforehand. The innovation must promise simplicity, efficacy, convenience and compliance.
The Expanding Innovations
Innovations have indisputably stayed their course in all crucial areas: defence, engineering, medicines, and exploratory sciences.
For example, medical knowledge is a vast ocean that is still to be explored fully. Yet their uncharted territories, viz. non-invasive surgeries to Robotic and Micro surgeries, CAT and full-body scans (diagnostic and the treatment sides of medicine), has witnessed widespread expansion due to rising innovations. This has given many industries the rationale behind staying consistent and strengthening their knowledge base, skill levels and quality output.
Today, we have several innovations in medicines and medical devices that have significantly improved the quality of life and added years to the human life span.
Some Notable Innovations
It is worth recollecting a few successful innovations that exemplify how simple yet effective ideas can go a long way.
- Total Reflection Prisms: Used as road markings, ‘Cat Eyes’ are embedded on roads and serve great value during night time by improving road visibility. These small glasses or plastic-covered tools with total reflection prisms inside throw the light beaming from the vehicles back on the road edges. This tool amply represents how innovation doesn’t always come with an exorbitant tag.
- Container Shipping: It was way back in 1934 that Malcolm McLean, an American transport entrepreneur, could foresee the possible adversities of a sagging ship and turned a critical lens and kickstarted the all-pervasive container shipping. This remarkable evolution made the loading and unloading process speedier, more systematic and secure.
- Bubble Wraps: Yes, you name it, and we know that we have all been there, done that! The cracking pop sound of the bubble wraps is sometimes as tempting as the gift-wrapped inside it. These modest-looking lightweight sheets are shock absorbing and act as a protective layer in packaging and safeguard fragile items from breakage by a great degree. Now they are also being used as a handy stress buster. This innovation turned out to be more inclusive and beneficial than the invention itself.
All the above illustrations have one commonality: irrespective of the type and size of innovation, the overall utility derived from the innovation can make a qualitative impact on businesses, their related areas, and the people at large.
Looking Inward & Moving Forward
Before one seeks innovation, it is important to pause and answer a few imperatives of effective innovation and some characteristics of a good innovator.
- Are you born with it? If not, can you cultivate innovation as a habit?
- Do innovators have to be scientists? If not, do you have the aptitude and perseverance to acquire the basic know-how?
- Does the need for innovation occur to you only when your back is against the wall?
- What is the precise utility value of the innovation?
- What all are the spill-off benefits in other related/unrelated areas?
- Do you detest bureaucracy but have a love for the market?
- Have good knowledge about quality?
- Have world-beating salesman potential?
- Believe that joy does have a place in business?
- Have strong nerves and high spirits?
- Can identify and use the missing X factor judiciously?
Such questions can give one insight into their innovative side and help use it to good effect.
It is undeniable that all innovations are subject to becoming replaceable. Yet, the innovation alone forms the bedrock on which a brand survives to become unbeatable and irreplaceable.
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