Yes, Innovation is extremely difficult. You are not the only one who thinks it’s a real challenge. It has been a struggle for me the last 30 years as manager, consultant, facilitator and as founder of the FORTH innovation method

That’s why I love it actually. Because I love to do difficult things. My personal goal is to make innovation less complex so others will be able to innovate their product – and service portfolios and organizations – themselves.

As one of the first Linkedin Influencers I have written 138 posts about innovation the last 30 months. I reread them to identify my most essential statements. Some are provoking. Others are simplifying.

Being Dutch makes me kind of outspoken and bold.  Here’s a list of quotes from my LinkedIn innovation articles. Please use them to discuss innovation with your colleagues and clients and to lead your organizations in innovation:

  1. In the long run a company cannot survive on doing the same things better and cheaper.
  2. Most managers behave like dogs. They bark at what they don’t know.
  3. Managers say yes to innovation only if doing nothing is a bigger risk.
  4. Innovation moves forward in every sector whether your company moves with it or not!
  5. Continuous innovation is bullshit. You only innovate when you have to.
  6. Organizations frustrate innovative employees.
  7. Starting innovation is like a child starting to walk. Learn to love the struggle!
  8. If there’s no urgency innovation is considered as playtime.
  9. Most people only innovate when they have to. Pick the right moment.
  10. Innovators need the patience of a hunter to wait for a shot that you’re sure you can make.
  11. Never start innovation with an idea. You will fall in love with it. But love is blind.
  12. A big idea is a new simple solution for a relevant problem or dream.
  13. The best innovators are need seekers.
  14. The problem of brainstorms is the inability of people to let go of the old ideas.
  15. If you don’t get new insights you won’t get new ideas.
  16. For most companies evolutionary ideas are quite revolutionary.
  17. You can invent on your own, but in an organization you can never innovate alone!
  18. The most important role of an effective innovator is to reduce uncertainty, moving from idea to launch as most people involved, co-workers, managers or investors are risk averse.
  19. Think outside the box and present your idea inside the box otherwise nothing will happen.
  20. Innovators should bring back new business not new ideas.
  21. Nobody buys innovation from a clown so bring back a new business case.
  22. The voice of the customer is your best support for a new concept.
  23. Innovators should stop writing plans. Innovation is learning by doing.
  24. Innovation does not stop at the first “No”. That’s the moment it really starts.
  25. It’s not how innovative you are. It’s how you are innovative!
  26. Less creative ideas are better because they have a higher chance of becoming reality.
  27. An organization is just like a herd. Focus on the slowest animals. When they start running too your organization really gets innovative.
  28. People prefer evolutionary innovations over revolutionary innovations because they can be implemented faster with less perceived risk and less resources needed.
  29. Operational Excellence brings you the profits of today. Innovation excellence will bring you the profits of tomorrow.
  30. To innovate is a verb. Stop talking. Start doing.

I hope some of them are helpful to you. Wishing you lots of success on your innovation journey.

Note : This article was originally posted on

Gijs van Wulfen

Gijs van Wulfen is a recognised authority and keynote speaker on innovation and Design Thinking. He was chosen as one of the first LinkedIn Influencers and as of 2017, 300.000 people across the globe are following his notably engaging, prolific and insightful posts. In 2016 Gijs came number 2 in the international Top 40 Innovation Bloggers. In 2017 his book ‘The Innovation Maze’ was elected ‘Management Book of the Year’.


Shenzhen Blog Editor