INNOVATION: 940 Executives Surveyed — Apple, 3M, GE, Microsoft, and Sony are top five innovators.

Most of us know intrinsically that innovation drives sales. We also know that people are always on the hunt for better, cheaper, faster, and new ways of doing things.

I was never a fan of vinyl. It scratched and was noisy. When CD’s hit the scene, I began voraciously consuming music. Same thing with videotape (hated it) which is why I was such a fan of the cool, new LaserDisc (size of an LP vinyl record but was an optical medium for video) when it became the videophile medium of choice. It wasn’t until the very innovative DVD medium hit the mass market (and killed LaserDisc, by the way) that I became a rabid fan buying DVD delivered content.

The iPod innovation has taken my use of audio to the next level. Not only am I consuming significantly more music, audio books, podcasts and more…I’m now doing my own podcast content! The podcast phenomena is a direct result of the innovation of Apple (and the work of the RSS god Dave Winer along with the popularizing of it by Adam Curry). With the rebirth of the iMac in the late 90’s (think candy colored iMac’s) along with the iPod, Apple has innovated their way out of being the moot point of the computer industry.

Business leaders are getting the message. Innovation drives top-line growth.

This study (link is a PDF) by the Boston Consulting Group, is about their second annual global survey of senior executives on innovation and the innovation-to-cash (ITC) process. This process covers the many interrelated activities involved in turning ideas into economic returns. It goes well beyond new-product development, to include such issues as portfolio management, life cycle management, and organization.

A total of 940 executives, representing 68 countries and all major industries, participated. Their executive summary highlights some of the top-level findings from the survey. The rest of the report explores the implications of the findings and provides more detail. Key findings in the study include:

  • Seventy-four percent of the executives surveyed said that their companies will increase spending on innovation in 2005, up from 64 percent in 2004.
  • Almost 90 percent of the executives surveyed said that generating organic growth through innovation has become essential for success in their industry.
  • Less than half of the executives surveyed said that they were satisfied with the financial returns on their investments in innovation.
  • Executives ranked Apple, 3M, GE, Microsoft, and Sony as the most innovative companies. Apple rose to the top spot from number five last year.
  • Globalization and organizational issues were cited as two of the biggest challenges facing many companies in 2005.

Each of us has evolutionary ideas of how to innovative our products, services or even our own personal brand equity. What new ideas and innovations — either evolutionary or truly revolutionary — are *you* bringing to market for your company *or* for yourself?

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  1. Bee Documents Blog on June 13, 2005 at 2:24 pm

    Innovation Report by BCC

    In his blog today, Steve Borsch points out a very interesting study done by the Boston Consulting Group on innovation and process of turning innovation into cash. It is an interesting read.

  2. Douglas K. Olson on June 14, 2005 at 9:33 am


    Your link to the BCG PDF file gives you an incomplete PDF file… nice cover and 23 blank pages. Is it just me?

  3. Douglas K. Olson on June 14, 2005 at 9:37 am

    OK, Ignore that last comment… the file is of course encrypted. I should have known better than that.

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About Steve Borsch

Strategist. Learner. Idea Guy. Salesman. Connector of Dots. Friend. Husband & Dad. CEO. Janitor. More here.

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Connecting the Dots Podcast

Podcasting hit the mainstream in July of 2005 when Apple added podcast show support within iTunes. I'd seen this coming so started podcasting in May of 2005 and kept going until August of 2007. Unfortunately was never 'discovered' by national broadcasters, but made a delightfully large number of connections with people all over the world because of these shows. Click here to view the archive of my podcast posts.