The Problem With Innovation

We all have a comfort zone -- a happy place where we feel a sense of control, peace and predictability. But comfort comes at a price. Happiness requires that everything around us falls within our positive expectations. Peace dictates that nothing negative is happening. Predictability means that there are no impending surprises. So what could change our comfort zone status? Welcome to the disruption of Innovation.

Innovation most certainly speaks to the antithesis of comfort. To innovate is to reach outside of borders and boxes that we're used to. Innovation forces us to try things never done before, to see what happens. Innovation isn't always fun and it isn't always pretty. Innovation creates chaos, and it is rarely predictable if done correctly.

The conundrum we face is that we assume technology will makes things easier for us, not harder. That technology makes the world more relaxed, more peaceful, and more controlled. That's part of why technology exists today -- because someone had the idea to leverage science to make everyday living better. So when innovation rears it's ugly head and says "hello boys... hear's Johnny!", everything goes to hell.

But the impact of innovation forces us to look at new things, with new angles and new methods. Innovation get's us off of our contented behinds, and opens our eyes to better solutions. Like a 30 year old college dropout living with mom and dad, innovation is the grandma who shoos us out of our room to go out and get a job. Innovation wakes us up, it scares the lazy out of us, and it rewards us with the next level of good technology.

This can be problematic for those who enjoy the fruits of everyone else's labor. People who basically wait for other's to do the dirty work. Make no mistake, real innovation is dirty, frustrating, and sometimes loathed. But when done right, it can turn an entire company on it's head. The reality is that everyone benefits from the implementation of innovation, regardless of the pain, the time, the cost and the doubt that come with it's use.

Innovation can feel like a negative in our technology world. But it is our friend, albeit the friend who forces us to take skydiving lessons. Innovation can feel like learning how to swim by being tossed into the ocean, but once you overcome your trepidation, innovation welcomes you with open arms.

Consider innovation as a worthwhile effort, not a problem. Because everyone's comfort zone deserves to be shaken up once in awhile.