Ideas for innovation may come from various sources, including:
- Internal employees as well as customers
- Within the industry as well as other industries
- Customers of the organization as well as non-customers
All these ideas can be broadly categorized into the following three buckets.
- Pain areas or issues or problems in the current system
- Things that are not working well, including those with poor quality and poor user rating
- Things that have significant limitations
- Proactive ideas from users, employees, vendors etc.
- Ideas to move to subsequent maturity areas
- Expanding boundaries for better customer experience and value
- New requirements, customer wants and needs, new product ideas etc.
- Disruptive technologies, innovation opportunities, ideas from academia etc.
- Ideas from outside the industry
- New technologies, processes, products etc.
- Disrupting current systems; and replacing them with newer ones
Each of these channels has a specific lifecycle process for ‘idea to implementation’. We should treat them differently as each has a different kind of validation, value, and timeline.
Focus on all three channels to build a healthy portfolio of innovation ideas that helps business success in short-term as well as in long-term.