05 March 2008

Recessionary times provide ripe opportunities for innovation, especially product innovation. If we are indeed entering into a recessionary cycle, remember it's just that: cyclical. There will be an end, and you'll want to be well positioned when times turn around. -- Ad Age, 5 March
I'm as cynical as the next guy... okay, maybe just a little more so. But none the less, this article (with it's positive spin on a scary topic) resonates powerfully with me.

If you look historically, it's the companies that invested in innovation during the downturns that emerged as leaders once markets turned around. In part, this is due to the times forcing rigor and structure on innovation (as opposed to boom times where adding a bike rack to your office is called "innovation"). But largely, of course, it's simply that innovation create differentiation and new market/product/business opportunity which creates competitive advantage.

This is the time for companies who have the capital to start thinking about innovation (either through acquisition or internal investment).


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