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Adaptive, Creative, Innovative Thinking (ACEIT) pronounced ace it.
Innovation Leader
Jul 11th, 2017

We are about to enter a period of change that is far different from any other time in history.  Multiple technologies are about to enter their accelerated development/advancement and adoption phases of their evolution – all at the same time.  This will create a pool of new and advanced capabilities that will fuel adaptive, creative, innovative thinking that will produce the next generation of leaders, new products, services and so much more.

A key indicator of the landscape that is ahead is the Associated Disruption estimate in the far right column.  Many assessments looking at disruption that focuses primarily on the workforce.  That has worked in the past, but are far less appropriate this time.  The change and issues and opportunities will be wide spread. One participant at a recent conference said that she feels bombarded with technologically driven change that is hitting her from basically every direction.  That feeling is becoming far more common that you might think.  That is why many professionals find it difficult to keep up with everything that is going on within their profession and industry. 

INSIGHT:       Subject matter experts have warned that this time disruption will be far reaching and likely include obsoleting a number of traditional business models and industries. 

The implications of this early stage of ACEIT activities is challenging to say the least.  Just consider a second wave of emerging technology driven ACEIT will occur before we are done with the current activities.  So much is changing and creating issues and opportunities that will surely impact all of us many are feeling it is impossible to keep up much less get ahead!  At this point, there is not even uniform agreement on the definition of what the emerging technologies are that will fuel the adaptive, creative, innovative thinking era.  It appears the best advice is to remain flexible, involved and monitor key changes in your particular environment continuously.

Adapting to change in a rapid, continuously changing business setting is anything but easy.  It is further complicated when multiple technologies are emerging and advancing creating multiple new and unique opportunities.  Function in these setting increases organizational pressure to perform in a compressed timeframe.  It is easy to see how strategic innovators might find themselves in this setting when your look at that appears to be just around the corner.

Creating the new business and professional world for ourselves and our organizations is part science and part art form.  Creative thinking, out-of-the-box thinking and wondering what if all contributes to envisioning the future and our role in that future.  Many think this is easy and it some even say this sounds easy but it is far more difficult than one might believe.  It takes time, patients, persistence and so much more.  I particularly find creating a team activity.

Envisioning the future requires an open mind and the willingness to accept new things even if they may reduce your current value to the organizations.  That is arguably what many find to be the hardest aspect of prompting and accepting strategic change.  Think about it, are you willing to promote a new idea, construct, technology that may make your position or the position of a close friend obsolete in the next couple of years?  Looking at the dozen technologies that are currently emerging, the opportunities they create and their impact could very-well place strategic thinkers in that ion.

Innovating requires breaking from traditional thinking, models and understanding of a particular subject matter.  You can adapt and create without innovating.  When you innovate think about how to obsolete existing models and practices with such force everyone will to alter their thought processes and models in a given area.  Don’t think outside the box – create a whole new box and redefine what the term box means.  Continuously support and reinforce the innovative mindset. 

Technology is required for just about every new strategy, idea, product, or service that is emerging today.  The current state of new and emerging technologies exceeds anything else we have experienced in history – including the Internet era of the mid-to- late 90s.  The cumulative $$$ impact of the multiple technologies that I track exceeds $40 trillion.  That is about 10 times what we saw with the internet.  With that in mind think about all the business and product model disruption that will take place.  Think about how many companies will fall from their dominant positions in the marketplace.  The change brought about by this multi-trillion $$$ market involving a dozen technologies will require diligence and a strategy.

INSIGHT:       It is not uncommon for innovation to come out of organizations that do not have a formal research and development (R&D) program with dedicated staff.

One organization refers to their adaptive, creative, innovative thinking initiative as ACIT.  They pronounce that as if it were spelled ‘ace it’ and I am sure we all see why!  Current projections state that the total market for these emerging technologies will top $40 trillion USD (yes trillion) by 2022.  The reason I am writing about all of this is that it is just one example of how progressive organizations are having to respond to what many are calling a “staggering impact” which the $40 trillion work of technology innovation is likely to take place in the next five years. My analysis indicates this period is likely to be 7 to 10 times greater than the Internet era of the mid to late 90s and I should know.  I had a front row seat in my role as Chief Strategist at Internet pioneer and icon Netscape during that period.

All of this combines to create what many believe will be the greatest period of change we have ever seen.  This will create a period of change that will challenge management like never before with both issues and opportunities.  Like most of the emerging technologies, this article cuts across many of the topic areas and segments that you have on your web site.  Strategic innovators will be impacted in ways that we can’t even imagine at this time.  However, here are three recommendations for those strategic innovators that want to capitalize on this changing era of adaptation, creativity, and innovative thinking.

  1. Strategic innovators must become aware (monitor) this era and assess how it might impact you
  2. Strategic innovators must build their knowledge and professional skills that deal with this period of adaptive, creative, innovative thinking.
  3. Take what they know, modify it, apply it examine the results and quickly learn from them.
  4. Strategic innovators must also increase their understanding of all aspects change as it is likely to occur in the next 5 to 8 years. Technical, financial, cultural, operational and so much more.
  5. Cultivate the team.  Help them grow along with you.  Share the growth experience and express what concerns you and makes you uncomfortable.  After all- you are all in it together!

This proactive approach is the only way I can see for professionals to capitalize the cumulative impact of technological and business change that is dawning.  I guess the only question that remains is – Are Your Ready to Ace It?

Comments (3)
Posted by: Arthur Fox  (Founder And Chief Innovation Leader  at Innovation Global Network ) on Jul 12th, 2017

I completely agree with your assessment of the changes about to take place.  This will create huge challenges for orgnaizations, individuals and even countries to develop the cultures, mindsets and capabilities to deal with and leverage these changes.  In fact this is already happening as we see companies struggling to find employees with the skill sets they require and in the increase in employee training and retraining.  Today I heard a report of one company talking about how they are increasingly firing and hiring people based on the skill sets they need today and for the future.  However, this is not enough as workers also have to be trained and organized to unleash their creativity and create the strategies they will need to utinlize their skills to plan and build the new products and services made possible by the new technology options.

Posted by: Frank Krick  on Jul 12th, 2017

I think we are already in the first phase of the change because key technologies are available and already operating. The strategic leaders have difficulties to decide because of so many changes, as you said. In small companies, there is not always a CTO who has an overview on what is currently going on and I assume many of them will loose their strategic position with the changes required for operating industry 4.0 as an example. I just had a discussion with a friend who is working for a company producing soldering equipment for the electronics industry. In this discussion I experienced that they were good as a SatrtUP. But by growing out of those shoes, they obviously forgot to focus on industry standarts for data exchange. The CAD-System they use can not provide the neccesary data for todays state of the art CNC Machines. So they will be behind the one who can provide the STEP XML data structures for automated machining. From that discussion, I well support your statements. The innovator must be aware of the upcomming problems and adapt to those with creativity and drive the changes with a long term startegy.

It not even might need a very innovative thinking in my example, rather than consulting an expert for machinery data exchange standarts. 

Thx Kevin fo your share

Posted by: Gautam Mahajan  (Founder Editor  at Journal Of Creating Value ) on Jul 12th, 2017

Great article. Awareness, ability and agility are important

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Kevin Coleman
Kevin Coleman
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at Innovation Subject Matter Expert
McMurray, Pennsylvania
United States
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