April 29, 2008

50 most innovative companies in the world

New list with the world's 50 most innovative companies done by businessWeek and BCG, link

Only surprises in top10, are 6th and 7th placed TATA Group & Nintendo. Apple is holding number 1, Amazon.com and IBM are out of top 10. 3M is only 22nd and Siemens only 38th.
Looking through regional perspective doesn't give too many changes

April 28, 2008

buying Green is/will be 'in'

In last edition of WIPO magazine, there is an article about Green Branding. link
It seems that we'll have hundreds of eco-labels which will point us to many 'green' products. Web site with eco-labels: ecolabelling.org So, whole new economy will rise (or this has already happen?), but then there would be potential threat in new term: Greenwashing - "the term used to describe companies trumping up their green credentials without any real basis".
I can imagine people shopping in supermarkets trying to find what some eco-label means, with thought on Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth". There is a plenty room for innovative companies but also for fraud.

April 21, 2008

4 types of innovators

I differentiate 4 types of innovators:

1. Radical innovator - creates or adds new technologies or systems. Often in chance for invention.

2. Value-add innovator - brings new additions on market with connection to customer. Possible inventor, too.

3. Adapter - adapts the product to customer wishes - incremental ideas - no clear chance for invention.

4. Special adapter - adds solutions to markets on which he spots a niche - focused on end-customer.

April 15, 2008

the architect's birdfeeder

It's not often when you can at first look at some product, say that is innovative. Well, that's the fact with the Architect's Birdfeeder. It's cheap, it looks nice, it easy to piece together.
Take a look - link

April 11, 2008

how to publish a book?

That's a question that I've been asking myself last four months. I've contacted the most probably interested publishers in Croatia, but they are not interested to publish my book about innovation management.
The country is small, so even if I find a publisher, the edition will be over 1000 copies. Maybe there will be more chances if I translate the book on english and try to publish it in UK or US. But the problem is the lach of time to do that.
I'm really dissapointed because I wrote it to help small and medium-sized firms to start with innovation climate. This problem really exist in this part of Europe, so I thought that I have found a niche for new product --> book. It seems now, that I was wrong. I know that it's always not easy to publish first book, so maybe I will put it for free on web or maybe just some chapters of it.
To have a sense what is inside my book, here is the list of chapters:

1. what is innovation?
2. brainstorming
3. innovations on demand
4. innovative climate
5. the innovator
6. rewarding ideas
7. evaluating ideas
8. innovation process
9. gently turning-down ideas
10. criterias for success of innovations
11. which innovations are needed in our company?
12. prototyping
13. storytelling
14. measuring innovations
15. how to become innovative
16. savings and improvements
17. how to come to the idea?
18. idea campaigns
19. types of innovations
20. how to catch the idea
21. patents
22. starting of innovation climate in croatian companies

If anyone have similar problem or have an idea, please write a comment.

April 8, 2008

solution for icy roads

Nice innovation for roads. Transparent varnish developed by French scientists in company Eurovia, which turns to pink when temperatures drop below 1°C.
When it is warm(2°C or more) it is clear again.
With this drivers could take extra-care on icy roads.

April 7, 2008

percentage for own projects

Interesting article in Harvard Business Review about Google. The part about innovation in job description. Google budgets 20% of employee time for their bottom-up projects.
The part from article:
Technical employees are required to spend 80% of their time on the core search and advertising businesses, and 20% on technical projects of their own choosing. As one new Google engineer put it in a blog: “This isn’t a matter of doing something in your spare time, but more of actively making time for it. Heck, I don’t have a good 20% project yet and I need one. If I don’t come up with something I’m sure it could negatively impact my review.”
So, this have a second effect besides that it gives an employee the efforts for new ideas. It will put the feeling of needfulness for ideas and new projects to each employee. Of course, this could only be applied in companies where employees are satisfied and motivated.