Innovation is a journey. Every innovation has a history and a future. It also has a present and our role is to help innovation have the brightest future it can, depending upon its history and the ever shifting market and organizational environments.
There are seven stages in the development of innovation. Most innovations falter somewhere on the journey from ideation to social or economic impact. At any moment in time on this journey there are two road maps that must be developed. The first is the market road map for innovation - what are the alternate paths to take advantage of the opportunities (and avoid the threats) created by the demographic, sociopolitical, technological and economic driving forces for change, delight customers, satisfy stakeholders and gain a competitive advantage thereby increasing profitability. The second is the organizational development road map for innovation - the alternate paths that the organization could take to be able to produce the innovations required by the market road map. The combination is the innovation road map. The engine that drives this journey is the interaction of creativity, strategy and leadership.