I just spent the past week at the Intel Capital Global Summit. It was an excellent event where companies interested in innovation, venture capitals, and startups met to network and discuss new trends. Overall, this experience served as proof that innovation is still alive and well around the world.

 

If you have seen any of my past blogs on the topic of innovation, you will know that I believe there are three pillars necessary for innovation:

 

  1. Commitment: It is important that innovation is championed through executive support and ultimately with an investment of funding and resources.
  2. Clarity: An understanding of which specific problems need to be solved and how to fail fast to eventually get to the solution is vital for innovation.
  3. Culture: The organization needs to be supported in the area of failure. It is through trial and error along with the eventual learnings that are derived from failure that encourages innovation.

 

It was exciting to see all three demonstrated very clearly at the Intel summit.

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Innovation Starts with Executive Understanding…

 

Through a series of organized meet and greet sessions, I had the opportunity to talk with many companies at the event. It was incredible to see the level of clarity demonstrated by the CEOs and executives of some of these companies. Plans of development and go-to-market strategies were well defined and clear. Additionally, these company leaders displayed an exceptional understanding of what problems they’re working on and the details on how they’re solving them.

 

But in every one of these cases, there was a common belief that the real innovation begins once the customer gets a hold of new technology. This is the point at which true understanding and the collision of ideas can occur. The specific problems are discovered as customers bring additional information to the discussion that can help companies hone in on legitimately scalable solutions.

 

…And a Company Culture That Embraces Strategic Change

 

Throughout the event, companies also met with each other to discuss how technology can be used to enhance solutions and better address some of the real problems faced by customers. It was apparent from the discussions that all of the CEOs were passionate about solving customer problems with the technologies that they are using.

 

This concept of ideas coming together to enhance and evolve a solution is very well outlined in Stephen Johnson’s video on the "slow hunch.” Rare is the occasion when someone conceives a brilliant idea in the shower (think Doc Brown in “Back to the Future”). More common is the process of a great idea starting from a seed, growing through a wide range of interactions, and eventually developing into something that is key to individual or company success.

 

Interested in innovation and the world of venture capital? Consider the Intel Capital Global Summit for next year. It can prove to be a significant gateway to network with these innovative companies. See how they can help you and how you can help them.

 

See you there,


Ed

 

Follow me on Twitter at @EdLGoldman and use #ITCenter to continue the conversation.