Crises and Innovation: intuition, imagination and networking

Terrible to say but a crisis has a positive side to it; you must have heard about the Chinese word for crisis: written with two separate kanji that mean risk and opportunity.  Thus, the crisis is here to tell us that we need to take risks and opportunities shall arise as a result!


From stalling to moving ahead:

  1. our economic environment is rethinking its paradigm… surprisingly human-centred,
  2. the companies are rethinking their strategy… through network-centric management,
  3. we are all rethinking our social ties… through family and neighbourhood solidarity.

None can deny that we have moved forward in a big way in the past few years, despite the terrible financial demise we are facing; if, on one hand, we seem to have gone individually, the reality is something else: we have garnered our systems with networking tools galore… So, what do we do with these, exchange titbits of information or vacation pictures? Much more conducive to humanity’s progress (from the Latin progressus which means: moving forward), let’s plan innovation through idea generation, shared knowledge, and team work.  Yes, innovation is not the private foray of State-run programs or Enterprise R&D’s!


The other day, as I was planning to design my new abode, someone, at a distance, asked that I describe the space so that he could get a feel; I could have taken pictures, assembled them in a way that made sense to my correspondent.  Yet, as a matter of innovation, I thought of an architect software to try out mapping the place; to my biggest surprise, I searched on the net and, within seconds, was scrambling with the floor planner; hours later, I came out with what turned out to be a magical 3D design of my place with mezzanine floors appearing as in reality.  I promise that I did not take any architect lessons in the past; it was just intuitive!


Intuition plays a big role in the current technology world and this is what allows anyone to quickly master any advance.  Have you seen how simple it is to use the most recent digital camera; if you remember the complexity of old photographic equipment, you can be amazed at how elaborate your pictures are today, whilst mastering complex technology functions.  It is the same with anything that you do today: see how simple your world has become if you accept the unconventional of going at things; kids, age 7, are better at most tools than us!


Imagination has developed tremendously as it is the power of bringing images and vision together; with the net as a base, it is so simple to go and get these sources of inspiration that shall lead to the next innovation.  Ok, you may not be the greatest inventor in the world, like Archimedes shouting Eureka when he discovered the water push on the body… in his bath!  But, no reason to feel guilty if you have used all information available to get where you want to go; that is what the net is all about.  More than that, it is also networking!


Networking when you hear what happened with this competition to curing AIDS, the fights between the American and French teams, come on!  How about cooperation rather than competition: is this world just about honours and money?  Granted, it feels good to be recognized but networking can save us time and is not time « money », in a way?  Advantage, fast assembly through modular design in innovation; share a document on any data base and each can add to the idea.  When will companies realize the power of shared innovation?


Let intuition guide you, let imagination feed you, let networking kindle you: that is innovation in and of itself; if you give yourself, and your network, credit for progress, we will altogether go far ahead in our new paradigm.  Happy New Year to all and let’s innovate together in 2010.

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