Gartner Research

Five Innovation Myths You've Probably Fallen For

Published: 03 September 2014

ID: G00259984

Analyst(s): Mary Mesaglio , Ed Gabrys


Innovation is shrouded in myth. Most enterprises want more innovation, but few know how to get it. Gartner encounters CIOs who fall for these five myths over and over again. This research dispels these tenacious myths one by one, offering a variety of easy and advanced innovation solutions.

Table Of Contents
  • Key Challenges



  • Myth No. 1: ROI Is the Most Important Innovation Metric
    • Reality: ROI doesn't work in exploration mode, because there are too many unknowns to make an accurate prediction.
    • Solution: Adopt "goal post" and "time to truth" metrics to manage uncertainty.
  • Myth No. 2: People Know What They Want; Just Ask Them
    • Reality: People are unreliable at knowing what they want.
    • Solution: Determine preferences via observation, rather than direct questioning.
  • Myth No. 3: You Know Who Your Best Innovators Are
    • Reality: Many of your best innovators are invisible to you.
    • Solution: Look for innovators in unlikely places.
  • Myth No. 4: The Value of a New Idea Is Self-Evident
    • Reality: New ideas do not sell themselves, and the best ideas often start off looking stupid.
    • Solution: To sell the value of a new idea, show, don't tell.
  • Myth No. 5: Big Problems Require Big Solutions
    • Reality: Small changes can have extraordinary effects if you know where to look.
    • Solution: Focus on "little elephants."

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