An Innovator has an Obligation to… Communicate

by Kim Chandler McDonald

Editor’s note: we invite you to Kim Chandler McDonald’s weekly interactive forum — to read and collect your comments on “An Innovator has an Obligation to…” We hope you’ll join the conversation!

Week 09 theme is “Question”

If, as George Carlin said, “An artist has an obligation to be en route.” Please complete this sentence: An innovator has an obligation to…

Talk over and monitor their ideas with a mentor, expert or professional Jolanda Preusterink, Teacher/Coach and Ambassador for Dutch Innovation

– Provide a written description of the invention, and of the manner and process of making and using it, in such full, clear, concise, and exact terms as to enable any person skilled in the art to which it pertains, or with which it is most nearly connected, to make and use the same, and shall set forth the best mode contemplated by the inventor or joint inventor of carrying out the invention. Thomas Gallagher, Principal, Gallagher Intellectual Property Law

– Be persuasive. George Mitsiadis, Process Control Systems Engineer at Metso Automation

– Be in full voice … speak up. Jennifer Ann Gordon, Innovation Catalyst

– Communicate her vision. Great minds can develop new and amazing ways of operating, but if those great minds can’t present it in a way that is first digestible and then palatable, then innovation efforts can be all for naught. Roy Nickerson, Management Consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton

Communicate. Communicate. Communicate. If an innovator cannot effectively communicate their idea then it may fail to get buy-in and be implemented. Erica Zeplin, MS Organization Behavior and Management, Biologics and Pharmaceutical Representative

You can have a fantastic innovation; but, unless you tell a good story about it, it’s never going to get anywhere. The start of the traction for innovation is being able to communicate it succinctly in an emotionally engaging way.Bill Liao, Internationally renowned Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, Diplomat, Speaker, Author, Venture Partner with SOSventures, Co-Founder of the social network service XING, founder of the non-profit organisations WeForest.com and co-founder of CoderDojo.

It’s undeniable, the world’s economy is changing and it may be a bumpy ride – more so for some than others.  The new, knowledge based, Global Digital Economy (the e-Conony of e-Commerce) can be  equated to something like the Wild West of yore, in its current state of flux and free-for-all for online stakes. But, unlike the classic Western, the heroes of this economic era will not be those who stand still, silent and alone.  The success stories of the GDE will be those businesses and organizations that collaborate and communicate with each other and with their ever-more expectant, empowered endusers – those who put the ‘me‘ in the me-conomy.  Together, they face a frontier which, though admittedly often uncertain, is borderless and boundless in its potential.Excerpt from the author’s essay, Innovating from the e-Conomy to the me-Conomy, from Innovation: How Innovators Think, Act and Change Our World

(Authors note: I’m very proud that Innovation: How Innovators Think, Act and Change Our World has been nominated for a Small Business Book of the Year award.  If you’ve enjoyed the excerpts I hope you’ll do me the honour of voting for Innovation here!)

If you would like to ‘have your say’, feel free to join in by sharing your thoughts below, and on the Innovation Excellence LinkedIn group forum!


Kim Chandler McDonald is author of Innovation: How Innovators Think, Act and Change Our World (available in print as an industry-first, SmartMark enabled, Online Ecosystem), as well as the Co-Founder and Flat World Navigator at KimmiC, a company specializing in  leading edge innovations such as FlatWorld™ – digital technology to easily capture, collaborate and capitalize on ideas, information and knowledge assets.