“Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world. “ Arthur Schopenhauer
Dale Carnegie advised never to talk about religion or politics in public because you never know who you might offend. While I will leave religion to the wise, I would like to tackle the politics of the day for it provides a luminous example of how innovation really works… and doesn’t. So while I may not win friends or influence people, I do hope to use recent exasperating events to illustrate its fundamental dynamics.
Case In Point: According to the Congressional Research Service, the debt ceiling has been raised 74 times since March of 1962. However, on the advent of the 75th “adjustment,” it became clear that projections of growth and expenditures by the US Federal Government resulting from myriad of factors, including the Great Recession of 2008, would put the credit rating, and the cost of capital, of the great nation in peril.
While the deadline of August 2nd for a new agreement loomed large in the psyche of the world economy, it seemed to have little effect on the über-quibbling of our friendly neighborhood “representatives” who resolved the conflict at the proverbial eleventh hour through Homeric acts of derring-do. Ta-Dah! What, no applause? Whereas this type of “trigger” event is boondoggle for traditional management, it’s a veritable windfall for instigating the nouveauté.
Why? Because breakthrough innovation typically occurs in either crisis or exceptional situations.