Who's Really Innovative?

by Mitch Ditkoff

Who's Really Innovative?Here’s a real treat: Gary Hamel’s Who’s Really Innovative? article recently published on (in?) the Wall Street Journal blog.

Once again, the lucid, straight shooting, and refreshing Hamel, hits a home run — taking on the phenomenon of annual “most innovative companies” lists.

Hamel makes some very useful distinctions between the four different kinds of innovative companies: Tyros, Nobel Laureates, Artistes, and Cyborgs. Lots to learn here, including:

“If you want a measure of just how difficult it is to stay innovative, consider this: Two-thirds of the businesses on Fast Company’s 2009 list of the 50 most innovative companies didn’t make into the 2010 edition. When it comes to innovation, few companies stand on the winner’s podium for long.”

The paradox? By the time you finish reading Hamel’s article, at least three more publications will come out with yet another list of the most innovative companies of 2010.

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Mitch DitkoffMitch Ditkoff is the Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions and the author of “Awake at the Wheel”, as well as the very popular Heart of Innovation blog.

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