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The article, The manageability of innovation, provides a background,

Why innovate?

Sooner or later, all organisations are required to innovate or cease to exist!

The role of innovation is gradually becoming understood. This is due, not least, to the need to respond to rapid and unforeseen changes in the physical and financial environment in which organisations find themselves.

Sub topics of this subject address the definition of innovation and the people and activities involved in innovative behaviour.

Innovation customers

The categories of customers for innovation have been documented based on their disposition towards the adoption of innovative products. Based on the seminal work by Everett M Rogers published first in 1962, and most recently in its fifth edition in 2003, there have been many approaches to this subject which based their models on the work of Rogers. Perhaps the most notable is “Crossing the Chasm” by Geoffrey Moore.

The categories are:

  • innovators
  • earl adopters
  • early majority
  • late majority
  • laggards.

Innovation products

While the range of customers for an innovation are all adopting the same new concept or feature, their consumption is often based on different products.

The range of products can be categorised based on the customers that they serve.

Innovation suppliers

Suppliers can also be categorised based on the categories of product which, in turn, match the categories of customers.

Innovation communication

The nature of the communication among and between customers and suppliers varies considerable between the categories.

Adoption of innovations

From the point of view of a customer, there are a variety of characteristics which distinguish categories.

Diffusion of innovations

From the point of view of a concept or feature, the innovation diffuses through the population in ways which have been well researched by others.


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