At room44 we do three things: we help you to believe the shape of future markets you see; we plan scenarios to help you decide which view to embrace; and then we work collaboratively on a justified innovation strategy – with a line back to where you are today.
Why? Let’s ask Steve Jobs. One of the many wise things he said was: ‘You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking back. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.’
Paraphrased: trust your judgement and shoot for a point in the future. This is what we call a strategic endpoint. Between where you are now, and where you want to go, is your roadmap. The things you do along the way are the baby steps – the granular actions that will get you to the endpoint you’ve identified.
Another oft-quoted modern-day guru is Malcom Gladwell. He contributes to the argument for innovation strategy by saying, ‘One of the mistakes writers make is they spend a lot of time worrying about the start of their story, and not a lot of time thinking about how to end it. Knowing my ending makes the beginning super-easy, right? It’s totally clear what I have to do and totally clear what I shouldn’t.’ I agree, Malcolm Gladwell. You can replace the word ‘writer’ with innovator, product manager, brand manager, category manager, open innovation manager, business development manager…
I’m not drawing comparisons between room44 and Steve or Malcom, so here’s my simple take on strategy: look at it as if you’re booking a holiday. It’s an easy metaphor that I talk about in this two minute video: Plan an innovation strategy like you plan a holiday.
The point is, innovation is a passing phenomenon. Those that are being hugely disruptive today are considered innovative, but this isn’t always quite true. For a long time, Apple didn’t innovate but iterated phones. Amazon is disruptive, but a lot of what it does can’t be called innovation.
We’d like to help you reach your endpoint by seeing it differently. If iteration is what it takes, so be it. If innovation fits the bill, let’s do that.
I received this ‘Dear John’ e-mail today. The sentiment is probably true, but the perspective suggests it won’t stay that way. Let me know if you disagree.
We are actually part of ******** so innovation and creativity is something we are world leaders at in our industry. Thank you for getting in touch anyway. Regards, Head of Business Development