Innovation is a modern concept to define the flow of inventions that have so far determined the so-called Humanity Progress.
From the Market point of view, it is necessary to consider that Innovation:
1) is the basis of any Business, because where there is competition there is a race to produce better products than others.
2) the problem is that this type of regime based on a continuous improvement of the products does not work when in History there are radical changes (as it was, for example, in the Industrial Revolution, or as it happens now).
That is to say, in phases of the market such as the current one,
improving existing products
DOES NOT ALLOW TO CREATE PRODUCTS
THAT CAN BE MADE FOR THE MARKET
This is because in periods of profound changes – of disruption – there are social conditions (of the Customers, of the Demand) that
make the CREATION OF
NEW RADICAL PRODUCTS NECESSARY.
That is, in these phases of history, first of all
THE CONCEPT OF INNOVATION IN ITSELF
MUST BE RADICALLY CHANGED
(we speak of product innovation, but also of companies’ innovation, without which it is not possible to obtain an effective radical innovation of the product).
The causes of the recession (the failure of current innovation)
It is crucial to understand how the demand for a new form of innovation (disruptive innovation) derives precisely from an error in the application of innovation operated on the Market in recent decades.
The fact is that in this period the Market leaders found a shortcut: they realized that it is possible to sell their products without actually improving them.
In other words, they have understood that it is possible to convince customers to purchase products by not leveraging actual qualities (on the qualities that are actually useful), but by inducing customers – through sophisticated mechanisms of “psychological induction” – to purchase products without real value.
These mechanisms have evolved over time, from those described in the text “The hidden persuaders” by V. Packard, to the most recent strategies of planned obsolescence.
In summary it has therefore happened that the Market has changed over the last few decades to the point of developing fake-innovation – that is, an innovation that concerns aspects that have no utility (but which have a lot of emotional grip).
And that this mode has gradually turned into an own-goal of the Business: today the Customers have reached a point that can be more induced to buy new products, since they no longer have the money to spend (has also contributed to this situation the action of Public Administrations, which have developed increasingly inefficient public structures, and therefore must constantly increase taxes).
This situation is paradoxically created by the Market itself: today the Customers develop habits, alternative practices (to those offered by the Market).
These alternative habits are precisely the Disruptive Trends, which must be taken into account by those who want to survive in the Market.
The essence of the problem, from an operational point of view
In summary, from the operational point of view (of the practical aspect) the problem is that, for decades, those who would have had to design useful products for customers, have ceased to understand the real needs of people.
That is, they have created solutions (products of the market, and public services and infrastructures) that
1) Not only have they been unable to meet people’s needs, but
2) have become unsustainable. An unsustainability that manifests itself on two fronts:
– for the Customers: an unsustainability that is produced, for example, due to “crafty” strategies such as that of programmed obsolescence, with which the Customers are forced to continually purchase new products to replace the previous ones that have become prematurely unusable.
– for the Companies: the unsustainability derives from the fact that in order to develop these new “crafty” strategies of the “Modern” Marketing, the Companies were victims of the same mindset that they wanted to induce in the Customers. That is, they incurred expenses that did not create any real value in them: the production tools are linked to the dimension of production of products based on the “non-substantial” values of “Modern Marketing”; and above all the human resources have the same “frivolous” mindset that they wanted to induce in the Customers.
That is, the Companies now find themselves having highly inefficient structures, and human resources unsuitable for change themselves (to provide a contribution that can be translated into the qualities of actual useful value now required by the Market).
For these reasons the Companies today are not able to cure themselves from them (in them it is not possible to reconvert neither people, nor structures).
The need to understand the meaning of the term innovation
The misunderstanding about innovation
Today everyone, in announcing their strategies, talk about innovation, but few know what they are talking about (there is, fortunately for the Market, those who do not talk about it, but develop a real innovation – like many Start Up created by young entrepreneurs in able to intuit the new Demand °).
The big players of the market, although things go really badly for them, do not seem to understand that we have arrived at a Breaking Point of Market development. And therefore I am not at all interested in understanding why the way to innovate does not work.
We therefore see the reason for this condition of profound and stubborn unconsciousness.
The two main levels of the problem
There are multiple levels of the problem:
1. we do not realize that the current Market phase requires a radical change (new Demand requires it)
2. the real qualities of the innovation to be developed are not known
1. WE DO NOT TAKE ACCOUNT THAT THE CURRENT MARKET PHASE REQUIRES A RADICAL CHANGE
On a first level of the problem, we do not realize that it is necessary to change radically because the demand is today qualitatively different from that with the Market, which has been confronted in recent decades.
Today we still think we can “tame” the Demand (buying trends) to continue to induce (as current Marketing is used to do) in artificial Customer needs.
But the change taking place in the Market is substantial, ineluctable: today the Customers – due to the recession that has drastically reduced their spending – are no longer able to buy the products of the current generation. And they are in desperate need of new products able to bring a value-really-useful for them.
2. THE REAL QUALITIES OF THE INNOVATION THAT MUST BE DEVELOPED ARE NOT KNOWN
The problem is that even those who seem to realize that they must develop a radical (disruptive) change in their strategies, today lose sight of the fact that:
1) “disruptive” is the description of the problem, not the description of the actual quality of the Innovation requested in the current Market phase.
The question is therefore that
the term dirsuptive innovation
does not describe the positive qualities of the phenomenon:
does not say what it takes to develop an effective innovation.
What is missing today is therefore
THE AWARENESS OF WHAT ARE
THE SPECIFIC QUALITIES OF THE DISRUPTIVE INNOVATION,
there is no clarity as to what they should be
the characteristics of a Company,
and what the qualities of a Product should be
that allow to
get a solid success in the current disruption Age.
This is because, in fact, there is no “positive” definition of disruptive innovation.
A first step to understanding the positive meaning of the term Disruptive is to understand the essence of change in act. That is to understand the reason for the change, the disruption, taking place today in the market.
And we lose sight:
2) the criterion that underlies the specific qualities that can satisfy the is: the product must satisfy real needs of people (after years in which products have been sold that aim to satisfy emotional needs, “invented” by Marketing) .
More specifically, using categories from the current Market Culture, it is necessary to understand that:
3) the meta-quality (or macro-quality) of the new form of innovation is Sustainability. That is Disruptive Innovation is essentially a .
The problem at this point is that it lacks clarity with respect to the concept of Sustainability.
The fact is that today the Market Culture is still based on a concept of Sustainability packaged for the previous Market, which served to induce the Customers to buy products based on an ideological push.
But this meaning of Sustainability today is no longer of any use for the Market, due to the recession that forces the Customers to abandon ideological aspirations to look for products that allow them to survive.
For an effective assessment of the quality of a product's innovation, the "TrendInsights's Guidelines to Disruptive Innovation" was developed, which offers:
1) an essential description of the meaning and methods of Disruptive innovation, and
2) a methodology for those who want to start a Disruptive Innovation business.
3) a Table summarizing the quality of the Disruptive Innovation for an assessment of business innovation capacity (usable both for developing a new Business and for analyzing Business already in progress).