How Do We Get Smarter on Innovation?


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I wonder how the innovation community – corporate people, consultants, academics and others – can get smarter on innovation.

In particular, I wonder whether we still need books and whether it is still worth the effort for authors to write them given the low book sales due to the insanely high number of books being published.

There must be better ways to share insights and knowledge. Here are some of my suggestions:

• Blogs. Obviously already an important factor

• Digital documents (PDF). Share insights on a key topic on 20-60 pages. This could be part of a series of documents allowing faster publication and thus sharing of insights.

• Short videos with explanations and key messages

• Physical events. Create even more content and share insights by bringing relevant people together.

• Virtual events. Same purpose as physical events. Not so sure about webinars as they tend to be rather dull. Other ideas could be something like Innochat on Twitter.

• Books. They could still serve a purpose, but more as a well-edited compilation once enough, quality content has been shared in the other ways.

What do you think of this? Can you add other great ways of sharing insights and knowledge?

Before writing this blog post, I had a brief Twitter conversation. I tweeted these questions: Are books still relevant for learning on innovation? Can we get by with blogs and 30-50 pages booklets? – and quickly got some interesting comments:

@risgaardknudsen yes for understanding 80% in 20% of the time. Books needed for in-depth knowledge. But perhaps guides to blogs etc will help. / practical experience combined with research/theory likely the best way to obtain in-depth knowledge on innovation. No easy way?

@innovationfixer Yes, will need to as ppl have less time available to read books / Yes – ppl have overloaded email inboxes, tough work/life balance. Only have enough time for small no of books. Can get topline conculsions and stimulation from blogs/50 page booklets / Books are a legacy product. Much of the space is for the research to back up the conclusions – fine, but only need summary plus references. / Only the top sellers make a real difference. Academics may still need books, but not practitioners. Hope these thoughts help.

@ovoinnovation Books still relevant, but ideas must be boiled down, and must be actionable. What’s the clear takeaway? What can I do now?

Marketing guru, Seth Godin is also rethinking books and he is clearly on his way to abandon this media altogether. Check these reads: Moving On / The Last Hardcover

I look forward to hearing your thoughts on this.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Stefan Lindegaard
Stefan is an author, speaker, facilitator and consultant focusing on open innovation, social media tools and intrapreneurship.


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