The concept of innovation it is associated in most cases with the action of slightly modifying or transforming a product in order to introduce it to the market in the form of something new. For instance: the broomstick, the Walkman, the Tablet.
The management and the day-to-day of a company are intimately linked with the innovation process, which some consider as the central axis of all production: competition between different companies is in all cases for having some kind of differential with respect to the market average, and innovation within existing products is precisely the means to differentiate. On many occasions, the differential is so great that innovation sets the standard for a benefit that the product must give from then on, otherwise it is considered practically useless.
The companies dedicated to the commercialization of products have innovation as a fundamental issue, possibly the most important of all. However, it is not very frequent that there is a ‘innovation department’ or an area in which some people are dedicated exclusively to the transformation of existing products. This is due to two issues:
- On the one hand, the innovation process does not come from the depth and intimacy of the people locked in some kind of office, but rather the origin is in the observation and external calls for attention, such as exhibitions, development, competition , research, seminars, fairs and even daily dealings with employees.
- On the other hand, no matter how good an apparently innovative activity is, it must go through several phases, with the first intention of analyzing the viability of the innovation as well as thinking about strategies to market the product in question.
The immediate association What is done between innovation and the private sector is, to say the least, hasty. In fact, the public sphere must be directly related to the tasks of productive innovation, due to the fact that innovation is ultimately a fundamental instrument for the competitiveness of companies, and therefore that of the country.
Most countries, to modify the competitiveness of its economy focus exclusively on the exchange rate issue, when carrying out policies to promote innovation brings benefits and practically no losses.
On the other hand, it is common to find innovation in other areas, such as education. The teaching and learning process, many connoisseurs claim, has a large part anchored in the past without offering too many specific reasons to take root in some ancient customs.
The educational innovation It is the transformation of the ways of carrying out the educational process, usually beneficial simultaneously for the student and the teacher. It is necessary for educational innovation that the teacher is open to the possibility of transforming the way they do their work.
Examples of innovation
Some cases of innovation throughout history will be detailed below:
- The broomstick, which brought the possibility of sweeping without having to bend down in search of debris on the floor.
- The Lucky Strike cigarette company, which traditionally contains 21 in the pack of 20 cigarettes.
- In the days when music was downloaded over the Internet with almost no exceptions, iTunes offered a convenient way to buy it by downloading song by song. The possibility of integrating it with reproduction devices made it achieve a market that seemed impossible.
- The Tablet, a tool where you can have computer applications in the size of a notebook.
- In the 1960s, the city of Amsterdam promoted the use of bicycles through a shared bike system. Over time, the proposal became general to different parts of the world, and today it is a success.
- The Walkman, which allowed the possibility of obtaining good sound quality and at the same time transporting it with the user.
- When the first companies decided to market electronically, many believed it was a crazy idea. Today it is an essential differential in many parts of the world.
- When most of the airline companies had user complaints about poor employee care, Singapore Airlines concentrated effusively on providing good care: different policies were geared towards that. It is a completely simple innovation, but no less effective for that.
- Companies such as Tupperware or Avón carried out an innovative business model, where people associate with the company and sell the product to each other.
- Give the customer the possibility to choose the characteristics of the computer.