Innovation v invention: Are you revolutionising or rust revamping?

Innovation v invention: Are you revolutionising or rust revamping?

Ever have that "Eureka!" moment in the shower, only to realise someone else invented sliced bread decades ago? There's a fine line between invention (think light bulb) and innovation (think dimmer switch). Understanding this distinction is crucial in the world of innovation management.

Invention is the birth of something entirely new, a groundbreaking concept that disrupts the status quo. Imagine the Wright Brothers taking flight for the first time, forever changing transportation.

Innovation, on the other hand, takes something existing and makes it better. The dimmer switch didn't invent light, but it revolutionised how we interact with it. Innovation can involve improvements in design, functionality, or efficiency.

Here's the fun part: innovation thrives on invention! New technologies create opportunities for innovative applications. The invention of the transistor paved the way for countless innovations in electronics.

So, how do you identify which path you're on? Here are some clues:

  • Is your idea fundamentally new or a significant improvement?
    Invention = new foundation, Innovation = building upon a foundation.

  • Does your idea create a whole new market or disrupt an existing one?
    Invention = new market territory, Innovation = conquering existing market share.

  • Does your idea require a paradigm shift in user behaviour?
    Invention = entirely new user experience, Innovation = refining the user experience.

The key takeaway? Both invention and innovation are vital for progress. Whether you're crafting a revolutionary product or a brilliant improvement, you're contributing to the ever-evolving landscape of our world. So, keep brainstorming, keep tinkering, and who knows, you might just invent the next sliced bread (with a dimmer switch, of course)!