The lifecycle of an innovation project uncovers far more insights than can be filtered, harnessed or used.
Those new to an innovation discipline can get intoxicated from this endless wellspring of insights.
insights range from deep consumer empathy that augments, validates and
deliciously contradicts everything a company thinks it knows about a
market segment, customer ritual or product category to a staggering
range of myth-busting insights about competitors, novel and new
distribution channels, technological possibilities, different revenue
opportunities and business models. As stated, the possibilities ferment
into a heady brew.
Organizations new to an innovation will codify
each insight and seek to find a way to actualize it. The analogy would
be a teenage boy they easily falls in love with any girl that is
remotely nice to him.
There are real consequences for taking
these actions ' and the foremost one is Opportunity Bloat. One
organization cannot possibly handle the typical influx of insights that
spawn from even one innovation project challenge.
useful only if they are aligned with core strategic growth priorities.
Then, you have to sift through the heap and refine the most potent
We call these shape-shifting insights 'driving
insights.' Inside them resides the ardor that inspires leaps in the
market, real growth.
Driving insights sometimes come from
consumers, sometimes from the engineering or technology teams, sometimes
via rigorous business analysis. Most often, a driving insight is a
fertile combination of these lenses: customer experience, science or
technology, and commercial sense.
Therefore, a driving insight is
a leitmotif that cuts through the dross and doldrums of corporate
orthodoxies and market prejudices.
Driving insights provide real
competitive advantage that can compound top-line growth while providing a
useful, usable product, service or experience new to the world.
all of the insights ruthlessly. Prioritize. Watch out for the ones that
show up with the urgent sense of a burning bush, but end up low-watt
once the refining fire of initial interest wanes. Work to articulate two
to three driving insights and allow them to serve as a compass for your
The trick is to not get distracted by the
false gold of too many insights. Some may have value; some may not.
Using a lens that is part customer-centric, part technology
possibilities, part business strategy, your organization can uncover the
By finding the driving insights, you can
choose where to play, how to win and how to turn these findings into a
sustainable leadership position within a given category.