The Myths of Innovation

The Myths of Innovation by Scott Berkun is a small but powerful book about innovation.

Scott has a wonderfully engaging writing style – it’s friendly, conversational, full of humor and informative, which I found was extremely well suited to the task in hand. He provides examples of how innovation works, where innovation comes from, and debunks several popular myths of innovation, pointing out that whilst there is a ‘eureka’ moment, there’s a whole lot of hard work which lead up to it in the first place.

For me this was actually quite profound given that myself, Rob, Chris, Alan and Ross spent a month sequestered away working on developing a prototype – we were given the shortest of briefs a problem to solve and were asked to come up with something compelling and innovative – during the course of that month we had our own ‘eureka’ moments and we can certainly attest to the hard work that was involved before we reached that point. In fact it’s something I’ll talk about far more when I discuss another book: Swarm Creativity: Competitive Advantage through Collaborative Innovation Networks.

As for Scott’s book it really is well worth reading and I can’t help but agree with Don Norman who said this about the book:

The naked truth about innovation is ugly, funny and eye-opening, but it sure isn’t what most of us have come to believe. With this book, Berkun sets us free to try to change the world, unencumbered with misconceptions about how innovation happens.

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