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Successful Innovation: The Philosophy of Creativity

Innovation Project: Context


The success of innovation depends not only on "the new," but also on "the useful," "the practical," and "the profit" of the endeavor.  Philosophically, the new is a "formal cause," the useful is an "instrumental cause," the practical is a "material cause," and the profit is the "final cause."  Take the Concorde airplane for an example.  The Concorde was new, but perhaps its time had not yet come in the light of the following problems.  The Concorde had limited usefulness because it could not overfly land due to the sonic boom; it could take only a limited number of passengers; it was an extravagant comsumer of fuel; and it was suceptible to political pressures so that it could not overfly the Straits of Singapore.  The Concorde was not practical because the technology for a supersonic airliner was not available and had to be invented from scratch.  The Concorde was not profitable in development (Britain and France could have bought all the airline stock of every United States airline); nor was it really profitable even with fares at "first class" plus 10% (the Concorde agreement was a politial treaty).  Thus the Concorde was poor innovation.

Newness: new products and services, new distribution, repositioning for new customers, new and better quality, new emphasis, add a product to a service, or an entirely new business model, e.g., universities relevance.  (Dundon 2002, 8)  Solve impossible problems.  (Bottom Line 2005)  We are all paid to solve problems!
Usefulness: Idea must be useful.  (Bottom Line 2005)  Change outrageous idea to a concept for useful application.  (Bottom Line 2005)  Strategy determines whether the idea is new and useful.   (Dundon 2002, 5-6) 
Production and Technology:  Systems innovation has to have technological success to match manufacturing with marketing, distribution, human resources, and customer relations.  (Kotelnikov 2005) (Shapiro 2002)  Innovation has to be implemented by putting the new and useful idea into action. (Dundon 2002, 5-6)  The next technology has to be considered: by research and development, new engineering, manufacturing capability, and project management.  Technological decisions have to be linked with business strategy.  (Fine 2005) 
Profitability:  Profitability is the maximizing of added valuefrom the implementaition of the new and useful idea.  (Dundon 2002, 5-6)  The first criterion to evaluate brainstorming is the potential profti imact on the company.  (Baldwin 2003)
Customer Satisfaction:  Philosophically the customer's satisfaction is an intermediate final cause on the way to profit.  The innovation has to be not only be new and useful, but also unexpected and delighting customers.  (Bottom Line 2005)  Ask customers about the causes of changes in the marketplace. (Kotelnikov 2005) 
Growth:  Philosophically the growth of the organization is an intermediate final cause on the way to profit.  There is a need to develop strategies both inside the organization and in the supply chain for future growth.  (Fine 2005) 
Competition:  Philosophically  the competitive advantage is an intermediate final cause on the way to profit.  The competition must be outperformed by the generation of break-thorugh ideas.  (Fine 2005)   Innovation is the key driver to competitive advantage.  (Kotelinkov 2005)  Confound your competition (Bottom Line 2005)
Holistic Approach:  The seemingly disparate causes for a culture of innovation (Shapiro 2002) must be integrated into a single strategy if they are to be maximized for effective profit, and to avoid failure:  financial risk, poor market reputation, and failure of moral.  (Baldwin 2003)  (Kotelinkov 2005) (Fine 2005)  The culture of risk taking is the decision to implement a well researched idea when the benefits would far outweigh the loss.  (Bottom Line 2005)

Philosophy grows by dialogue.  If you have any comments or corrections, just click this address to send mail:

John E. Mulvihill

The Innovative Team:  Everyone is creative.  However, creative style can be different.  Every style is of high value.  Since modern problems are complex, the innovative team should have members with experience of different parts of the organization and also different creative styles of the members, which will enhance the its core competency ultimately successful innovation.  (Bottom Line 2005)

Internal Senses:

The internal senses do not have any external organ, only the brain, but their act is dependent on the acts of the external senses.  The internal senses are four:
1.  Discernment ("Sensus Communis")
2.  Imagination
3.  Instinct
4.  Memory

Thesis:  Internal senses are 4 in number.

1.  Argument from experience:  we distinguish "red" from "green", and "sweet"; we can imagine a "gold mountain"; we remember past injury; and we instinctively flee or like. 
2.  Argument from finality:  an animal needs to know from external senses, but also needs to know when to flee or, from memory and discernment, what to seek. 
3.  From formal object:  each internal sense has its own formal object distinct from the others -- all species (sensus communis), reproduce absent (imagination), unsensed (instinct), reproduce past (memory).
4.  From irriducibility:  Aquinas notes: "Whatever actions, which are not able to be reduced to one principle, require different potencies." (Summa Theologica, Ia, q. 78, a. 4)  

Localization of Internal Sense:  in the brain.
Sense Memory  Product is not intellectual:  remembered as song, smell, sight.
Internal Sense Image is known as "not external".
Hallucination:  is Image plus reference to external senses.
Reproduction of Image caused by 1) organic status, 2) laws of association (Philosophers: Stuart Mill, Bain, Spencer), and 3) determination by instinct or (in man) by reason, called reminiscence.
(Boyer 1933,43-48)

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