Over the years innovation has changed the world in countless ways, from technological advancements that have revolutionized the way we live to business strategies that have transformed entire industries.
Looking back to the difference or better still the changes you will observe between the years of 1623, 1823 and 2023 is evolution. This so-called evolution is as a result of innovation itself. In this article, we’ll explore some of the most significant innovations that have changed the world.
From the pre-manual era to the manual era then fast forward to the automated era something different has emerged that has allowed the smooth, well sometimes not no smooth transition of these eras. This emergence is as a result of innovation.
What is innovation you might be asking
Peter Drucker, a management consultant, defined Innovation as the practices of recombining resources to give them greater value. Innovators create innovations and they are critical thinkers that create solutions to problems. The resources are not necessarily new or just developed, they are mostly existing resources that are not in use typical examples are
Uber started when Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp found themselves stuck in Paris on a snowy evening, unable to find a taxi. They asked themselves: “What if you could request a ride simply by tapping your phone?”
The thought of using a cell phone to order a ride from the exact location you were standing in was a revolutionary innovation. People would no longer have to wait, hoping for a car to pass or walk the streets in search of one. This seemed to please many people, as Uber quickly became popular in big cities like San Francisco and Paris.
You have certainly heard of Airbnb already. Airbnb is an online platform that connects people (guests) in search of accommodation with hosts who are interested in renting out their place. Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia who were roommates were worried about their rent, which was due because they didn’t have money at that time. While thinking of ways to pay the rent, they came across the design conference scheduled to be held in San Francisco that weekend and found that all the hotel bookings in SF were sold out.
An idea was picked up and they immediately decided to host some guests from the conference in their room. They got three airbeds and hosted three guests, thus planting a seed for Airbnb.
there are many more innovation that you are familiar with like the printing press that brought in the age of enlightenment, Electricity that brought in the age of activity also the compass that brought in the age on discovery and many more such as internet, sky-rocket, steam engines etc.
How do you innovate
Every innovation you know was developed to solve a problem. As beautiful as it is to be an innovator, nobody just wakes up to create things that won’t produce value or things that nobody needs. You might not realize that you need it till you use that is true, but the innovator senses the need and that is why it was developed.
Like George Bernard Shaw said “People look at things as they are and ask why, I look at things as they could be and I ask why not”. Innovation matures through four processes
- Find the Problem: innovation comes as a result of a problem. They are majorly developed to solve a problem, for example boat calculators, eye-glasses and many more things you are familiar with.
- Knowledge: after discovering the problem itself you start to collect information on how it can be solved. You sometimes go as far as checking if it has been solved somewhere, understand how it was solved and check for everything useful.
- Ask why not: innovators see beyond the surface and stretch to ask questions. With possible ideas in mind, they start to ask why not this way or that way?
- Prototype: after asking questions and building ideas alongside possible solutions, they put it to the test. They work on it to see if it answers their problem.
The world will keep revolving and problems will keep emerging also solutions will keep developing whether you are or not. Like Sir Francis Bacon said He who would not innovate would perish, for time is the greatest innovator of all. Check out our website for more articles