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What is the important difference between creativity and innovation?

“Creativity” and “Innovation” are frequently used as interchangeable terms. But they are not the same thing. Creativity is about coming up with ideas. Innovation is the process that exists between idea generation and the sustainable execution of that idea.

This difference is important because there is more leverage in building a culture and infrastructure that can turn ideas into innovation, than building a culture and infrastructure to generate more ideas.

Organisations have a long way to go to become thriving idea generators, but they are significantly better at idea generation than turning those ideas into reality: Fortune 500 executives rate their companies as six times better (Govindarajan and Trimble, 2010).

Organisations must, therefore, focus their energies not only on how to capture more ideas - because ideas are aplenty - but, more urgently, how to turn those ideas into something tangible.

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  1. John Featherby

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