The Innovator's DNA: Mastering the Five Skills of Disruptive Innovators

The Innovator's DNA: Mastering the Five Skills of Disruptive Innovators

Clayton M. Christensen

Language: English

Pages: 304

ISBN: 1422134814

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

A new classic, cited by leaders and media around the globe as a highly recommended read for anyone interested in innovation.

In The Innovator’s DNA, authors Jeffrey Dyer, Hal Gregersen, and bestselling author Clayton Christensen (The Innovator’s Dilemma, The Innovator’s Solution, How Will You Measure Your Life?) build on what we know about disruptive innovation to show how individuals can develop the skills necessary to move progressively from idea to impact.

By identifying behaviors of the world’s best innovators—from leaders at Amazon and Apple to those at Google, Skype, and Virgin Group—the authors outline five discovery skills that distinguish innovative entrepreneurs and executives from ordinary managers: Associating, Questioning, Observing, Networking, and Experimenting.

Once you master these competencies (the authors provide a self-assessment for rating your own innovator’s DNA), the authors explain how to generate ideas, collaborate to implement them, and build innovation skills throughout the organization to result in a competitive edge. This innovation advantage will translate into a premium in your company’s stock price—an innovation premium—which is possible only by building the code for innovation right into your organization’s people, processes, and guiding philosophies.

Practical and provocative, The Innovator’s DNA is an essential resource for individuals and teams who want to strengthen their innovative prowess.


















alarm goes off. Adapt Use the wristwatch as a reflective mirror when lost. Magnify, minimize, modify Make the wristwatch face large enough to be a cup holder. Put to other uses Frame the watch as a work of art. Eliminate Remove the internal workings of the watch and replace them with a sundial. Reverse, rearrange Change the watch hands to go counterclockwise. Put the watch face on the inside of the wristband to make the back of the watch the focal point in terms of design and fashion.

9:58 AM Page 73 73 Questioning Group (BIG) (a company that finds new product ideas through an inventor network and then launches them), shared an example of how inventors hunt down the real job to be done by understanding better what is really going on in their world. One inventor had pitched a fifteen-minute card game to Collins and his team for potential development and distribution by BIG. Collins felt that the game, as presented by the inventor, wouldn’t crack a tough familygaming market.

end, reveal potentially disruptive solutions to difficult problems. Tips for Developing Questioning Skills Innovators not only ask provocative questions, but constantly work at asking better ones. For example, Michael Dell says that if he had a favorite question to ask, everyone would anticipate it, which wouldn’t make it very good. “Instead, I like to ask people things that they don’t think that I’m going to ask them,” he told us. “I kind of delight in coming up with questions that nobody has

interesting observations that led to a very different way to sell cars in the villages. First, the team observed that people did their major shopping on Sundays at farmers’ markets or flea markets. There were no permanent scooter or car dealerships. Scooter dealers arrived in a big truck filled with scooters and just stuck them in rows on their allocated piece of ground at the market. People would buy a scooter, get a license, learn how to operate it, and then drive it home that same day. So the

by understanding and explaining the anomaly. For example, in research on the impacts of technological innovation on the fortunes of firms, early studies concluded that established firms, on average, do well when faced with incremental innovation, but stumble when confronted with radical change. But there were anomalies to this general 100092 04 089-112 r1 go.qxp 5/13/11 9:59 AM Page 103 103 Observing conclusion. Some established firms successfully implemented radical technology change. To

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