Malcolm Gladwell, author of Blink, The Tipping Point and Outliers, presented at the Intuit Financial Services National Conference this week in Los Angeles. In the session, Gladwell challenged the audience’s thinking around innovation with case studies from Israel’s Bekaa Valley air battle in 1982, to the development of the Mac computer, to NCI’s cancer research breakthroughs in 1965, to the creation of Facebook.
Gladwell highlighted three key ingredients for successful mass market innovations:
1) Being a tweaker instead of an inventor. The most brilliant inventors often don’t know how to put ideas into practice. Tweakers, on the other hand, are highly effective at taking an existing idea and working collaboratively to make it better for the masses.
2) Lack of material advantage is often an impetus for innovation forcing you to be creative on how you approach a problem.
3) Being third to market is actually an advantage over being first. Wait to see where the market is going and then jump in with your innovation that improves on what is already out there.
For financial institutions that don’t have the same budgets as a large corporation to develop new technologies and services for customers, Gladwell’s advice can be heeded as they tap into the latest innovations on the market.
What is your experience with bringing new products to market? Does your FI have “key ingredients” to tapping the latest innovations? Let us know in the comments section below.