Why Is Innovative Intelligence Vital In The 21st Century?

Competitive pressure and economy have changed the ways of doing business. These ongoing changes put an increased value on various people skills, such as emotional intelligence.

Highlighting the importance of self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship management, and collaboration, emotional intelligence has drawn a lot of attention in the recent years. Companies today see emotional competence as a differentiating quality between mediocre leaders and the best.

Innovative Intelligence is, on the other hand, a new construct. 

New emerging technologies, dynamic economy and global competition emphasize the importance of innovation for the success of  business.

“The good news is that intelligence is now recognized by strategic decision makers as an effective method of solving issues in all aspects of  life”,  explains Nan Bulger, CEO of SCIP.

Today, businesses need to be innovative to stay ahead, however, businesses are struggling to embrace the change and are often slow to welcome what’s new.

Innovation is a constant process, and innovative thinking makes innovation happen. Unfortunately, for many businesses, the idea of innovation comes with many questions and assumptions about something that’s only better. 

Innovation is about new and next, but innovation intelligence and thinking is the process of solving problems by discovering and combining ideas and methods in the new way.

“We are living in a really interesting time right now, (but) our imagination is the one skill that is not developed. We're at a time right now where science and technology have improved to the point where what we build is only contained by the limits of our imaginations. Imagination is undeveloped skill”, emphasizes Brian David Johnson (Futurist, Intel) in his talk.

Brian uses ethnographic field studies, trend data, technology research (even science fiction) in his work, called “future casting”, to help governments, trade organizations, militaries, multinational corporations and startups envision the future of consumers and computing.

How can Innovative Intelligence be used effectively in an organization?

Businesses today need to redefine the company’s culture, and workplace's culture, embrace innovative intelligence and create leaders who can understand how to systematically and sustainably innovate for business success.

Individuals and organizations need to embrace a culture of innovation as innovation is applying creativity to reshape old ideas into new, to achieve success and value.

“It’s important to understand the place of intelligence within the larger context of an enterprise. The need to generate the competitive intelligence (CI) is certainly not new. Sun Tzu plainly stated the rationale for intelligence over two thousand years ago. He wrote: “Now  the reason the enlightened prince and the wise general conquer the enemy whenever they move, and their achievements surpass those of ordinary men, is foreknowledge.”

The benefits gained by successfully anticipating a competitor’s future plans and strategies are generally self-evident. The consequences of making decisions based on the information that is incomplete, inaccurate, or late are as severe. 

Organization that can effectively generate, capture, disseminate and apply knowledge better and faster than their competitors stand a higher probability of achieving a successful performance“, explains Craig S. Fleisher in his book Business and Competitive Analysis. Craig S. Fleisher is a scholar, advisor and author who has written several books in the field of competitive intelligence and analysis and business.

“The future is built every day by the actions of people,” said Brian David Johnson. Innovative intelligence involves the power of observation, insights and abstraction. Innovative intelligence tests our collaborative competency, and powers curiosity, imagination and questioning.

Innovation is needed for businesses to succeed, however, “successful innovation seldom is based on a “flash of inspiration.” Rather, it requires a disciplined pursuit of a desired outcome and knowing what to do to achieve objectives”, writes Alan J. Rowe in Creative Intelligence: Discovering the Innovative Potential in Ourselves and Others.

Innovative Intelligence helps move society forward, organizations and business need to learn how to innovate and create if they wish to succeed.


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