application of better solutions that meet new requirements, inarticulated needs, or existing market needs
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The term innovation means a new way of doing something. It may refer to incremental, radical, and revolutionary changes in thinking, products, processes, or organizations.


  • Risk is the companion of innovation. As the Chinese proverb says, ”Unless you enter the tiger’s den you cannot take the cubs.”
    • John Adair (b.1934), British author of books on business leadership. ‘The Innovative Organization’, Ch 11, Effective Innovation, revised edition (2009).
  • Innovation is more than having new ideas: it includes the process of successfully introducing them or making things happen in a new way. It turns ideas into useful, practicable and commercial products or services.
    • John Adair (b.1934), British author, writer on business leadership. ‘Taking good ideas to market’, Ch 11, Effective Innovation (2009), revised edition.
  • Walter Isaacson’s new book ‘Innovators’, a book featuring solely white inventors, says that true innovation happens when the government, military and academia work together. Isaacson says that the biggest motive for innovation is profit. The concept of money being the sole motive for innovation is bullshit. It is an idea promoted by those in power in order to manipulate humanity.
  • He that will not apply new remedies must expect new evils; for time is the greatest innovator.
    • Francis Bacon (1561-1626), ‘Of Innovations’, Essays, 24 (1625).
  • As the births of living creatures at first are ill-shapen, so are all Innovations, which are the births of time.
  • Every new thing creates two new questions and two new opportunities.
    • Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO, Amazon, from 2007 Ted Talk "The electricity metaphor for the web's future", [1].
  • Innovation is usually not a gigantic step but a series of small jumps involving various enterprising people whose names are soon forgotten.
    • Geoffrey Blainey, The Story of Australia's People: The Rise and Rise of a New Australia (2016).
  • Customers don't have a clue what you're talking about, and you don't have a clue if they will behave as you assume.
    • Steve Blank on introducing revolutionary products, in Patri K. Venuvinod (2011) Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Part III: My Startup p. 284.
  • Any conversation I have about innovation starts with the ultimate goal.
    • Sergey Brin. Interviewed by Jemima Kiss for the Guardian (UK) newspaper, ‘Secrets of a nimble giant’, Wednesday 17th June 2009.
  • The task facing philosophy today is to examine its filiations to its most hallowed concepts and to consider anew their productivity. ... The result of this task might be to see old concepts as more productive than new ones, which suffer not merely from the fact that they are inevitably expressions of the general conditions of possibility of the present moment, but also because of the way in which the eternal production of the new is linked more strongly than ever to the basic drive of capitalism.
    • Nicholas Brown and Imre Szemán, “Twenty-five Theses on Philosophy in the Age of Finance Capital,” in Leftist Ontology, edited by Carsten Strathausen (2009), pp. 36-37
  • To innovate is not to reform.
  • Defined simply, innovation is, of course, the introduction of something new. We presume that the purpose of introducing something new into a process is to bring about major, radical change. Process innovation combines a structure for doing work with an orientation to visible and dramatic results. It involves stepping back from a process to inquire into its overall business objective, and then effecting creative and radical change to realize order-of-magnitude improvements in the way that objective is accomplished.
    • Thomas H. Davenport, Process Innovation: Reengineering Work through Information Technology, Harvard Business School Press (1993).
  • The paradox of innovation is this: CEO's often complain about lack of innovation, while workers often say leaders are hostile to new ideas.
  • I always stress to my clients that they have to be ready to change. You have to be prepared to make your innovation obsolete. But many companies aren’t prepared to do that.
    • Peter Drucker. ‘Peter’s Principles’, Context magazine, Spring, 1998.
  • Innovation implies high risk, and with high risk comes failure, so you’ve got to be prepared for that, but if you don’t risk, then your business goes stale very quickly.
    • Michael Grade, British broadcasting executive. From the transcript of his interview with Martyn Lewis, in his book, Reflections on Success (1997).
  • No decision in business provides greater potential for the creation of wealth (or its destruction, come to think of it) than the choice of which innovation to back.
    • Robert Heller, British business journalist and author. Ch. 5, ‘The Innovators’, The Decision Makers (1989).
  • Here lies one of the world's rare generalized TINAs. There Is No Alternative to creativity and innovation: these days, obscurantism and conservatism will do for you every time.
    • Robert Heller, The Decision Makers (1989).
  • Successful innovation has consistently proved to be fluid and flexible, fast and furious — that is, passionate.
    • Robert Heller. ‘Business strategy: the lessons of the 'big ideas’, 30 Jun 2009, in his blog, Thinking Managers, on, website.
  • The key to success for Sony, and to everything in business, science and technology for that matter, is never to follow the others.
    • Masaru Ibuka, founder of Sony, quoted in Fortune (24 Feb 1992). In Julia Vitullo-Martin and J. Robert Moskin, The Executive's Book of Quotations (2002), 271.
  • Change is not made without inconvenience, even for worse to better.
    • Richard Hooker (1554-1600), As quoted in the Preface of Johnson’s English Dictionary
  • At a time when the United States is seeking ways to sustain its innovative edge, and when societies around the world are trying to build creative digital-age economies, Jobs stands as the ultimate icon of inventiveness, imagination, and sustained innovation. He knew that the best way to create value in the twenty-first century was to connect creativity with technology, so he built a company where leaps of the imagination were combined with remarkable feats of engineering. He and his colleagues at Apple were able to think differently. They developed not merely modest product advances based on focus groups, but whole new devices and services that consumers did not yet know they needed.
  • There seems to be this almost innate desire to tell stories about innovation in terms of eureka moments. For some reason, we just want to ... condense them to these moments of sudden clarity, where a light bulb pops over someone's head and they ... suddenly see the world differently. The apple falls from the tree — and they have a theory of gravity — whatever the trigger is. But when you actually go back and look at it ... in the historical record of innovation, eureka moments are the exception and not the rule. Almost always, there is a very long incubation period that goes into a breakthrough idea.
  • Innovation is new stuff that is made useful.
    • Max Mckeown, British management guru and author. The Truth About Innovation (2008), ‘Truth 1’, p. 2.
  • Creativity can only survive in organizations in which the climate is empathetic to the whole process.
  • Our need for innovation has shifted power closer to the source of that power—Us. We are the future.
    • Max Mckeown. 'Preface', The Truth About Innovation, (2008).
  • The stone that is rolling can gather no moss;
    For master and servant oft changing is loss.
    • Thomas Tusser (1524-1580), ‘Housewifely Admonitions’, Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry.
  • At the end of the day, the goal of building something is to build something, not to not make mistakes.
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