I have had a little obsession with single word titles. Do bear with me on this.
Part 1 of three part series Walk, Run, and Fly.

I came across the recently published 9 Notions of Innovation by Marissa Mayer, Google's vice-president of search products and user experience, Video. Link. they are

1. Ideas come from everywhere
2. Share everything you can
3. You're brilliant, We're hiring
4. A license to pursue dreams
5. Innovation, not instant perfection
6. Don't politic, use data
7. Creativity loves restraint
8. Worry about usage and users, not money
9. Don't kill projects, morph them

Some of them may seem specific to organizational perspective, but can be just as effective in generic organizational and personal situations as well.

If I ask myself, how often do I innovate? It seems to be a silly question in the first place, but it is not. Most of us would agree that it is very important to innovate in order to stay one step ahead in the game. Yet, how often we end up innovating is a point of contemplation. When I assess myself on the scale of innovation, I would score rather low. Does this mean that there is no innovation going around me? How can one measure and categorize day to day activities as innovative?

The answer to that bunch of questions is simple. We all innovate and quite often, but we rarely consolidate it, polish it and take it to its logical ending. This is the reason why innovative solutions are hard to find, design and deploy? We have literally shut ourselves in our invisible cages of conventional wisdoms and are sub-consciously playing by those rules.

Conventional wisdom tells us to do the basics right. But we often get so rattled by these principles, we may end up missing the single biggest contributor which may end up deciding our fate - Innovation. Surprisingly, Innovation is not about doing out of the box type things only, but doing conventional things smartly, applying common sense and with a sense of constant itch to be better and push the envelope.

The key here being *Push the Envelope*. The difficulty being, it is hard to look beyond it and we are already smug and comfortable within it. Why push?

In my personal assessment, I have ventured into the by lanes of underrated/underutilized (ad several other resources) innovation several times, but haven't committed myself to polishing it and making a move on it. However, I do try to work on things that make more sense than how they are being done by my predecessors. I cannot classify it as *spectacular* innovation, but somewhat in its category none-the-less.

Take for instance the content authoring tide that I wanted to drive at my workplace. However, due to lack of zeal to set the example (cause it is simply very tough to create good content), and a million other *good* excuses, I came to the conclusion that innovation is not just about having the best, brightest and innovative solutions, but to actually walk the tougher line to actually follow up on them and make something out of it. Otherwise you are simply putting more air in a bubble.

Contd... in Run, followed by Fly