Monday, November 9, 2009

The Importance of Innovation in Achieving Success

This guest article was written by Adrienne Carlson, who regularly writes on the topic of online executive mba programs. Adrienne welcomes your comments and questions at her email address: Her website is here.

Every entrepreneur dreams of stupendous success; they want not just the money, but also the fame. And success comes not just with luck alone, but with a combination of dedication, hard work, commitment, and of course, innovation. In fact, the ability to innovate determines how long a company is able to sustain its dominance in the industry, because without innovation, any business is bound to stagnate and eventually die out. In what can only be seen as an ironic twist, change is the only thing that is constant in life, so any business must be willing to change according to the environment it operates in.

Innovation can be defined in different terms, each of which is a little different from the other and all of which contribute to the long term success of any business. In short, innovation must be a combination of the below aspects:

• Adaptation: Ideas are a dime a dozen, so anyone can come up with them. But the ones that do succeed are far and few between. For every success story, there are a thousand failures that take place silently. And what differentiates the successes from the failures is the ability to adapt. Today, there is more emphasis on personal health and going green. So if a product or service is adapted or changed to become or eve be perceived healthier or friendlier to the environment, it is bound to taste success.

• Flexibility: Products and services that are a success are often a far cry from what they were on the design board. This is because they have undergone numerous changes according to consumer demand and market research. They are flexible enough to be changed according to the changing trends. And this is why they succeed where thousands of others fail.

• Resourcefulness: Entrepreneurs who cash in on opportunities are innovative as well; the opportunity may be short lived and temporary, but they’re able to strike when the iron is hot because they have sensed it ahead of the competition. They have their pulse on the market and know when it is the right time to make a move.

Innovation is the lifeblood of any business, more so in times when the economy is down and it’s harder to make profits or even break even. So when companies fail to improvise and innovate accordingly, they find themselves slowly falling behind the competition, and finally being pushed out of the race altogether.