This is not intended as an advertorial for, but I do have to reference it to write this important nugget. More specifically, I have to reference one of their many brilliant ads. Their “Stick it!! ad. [See below.]  This ad ranks as one of my all-time favorites. I stop discussions around me to direct people’s attention to this ad, followed by my usual exclamatory,  “I love this ad!!”  Why?

The actress is perfect–expressions, tone of voice, gestures…hilarious. The acting, perfect. The script, perfect. The element of entertainment and the message, perfect. This woman could not have succeeded, (as purported in the ad), unless she was perseverant. This ad reminds me that innovators, and their champions, must be perseverant, if the idea is worthy. Perseverance is at the heart of any successful achievement.

Innovation takes perseverance but not blind passion. Too often innovators, leaders, and managers, in a quest to demonstrate to others their dedication to the cause, run on blind passion. Blind passion is just that, blind to the risks, and blind to the true value of the idea. In business, if an idea or concept won’t make money, particularly profits, then it has to be abandoned. Passion and perseverance can never make up for a stupid idea or a weak business model.

Assuming the idea, innovation, business model, process, is “worthy”, meaning has a profitable reward-risk ratio, then it is up to the innovator, and the innovator’s champion to persevere. In order to INNOVATE,  innovators must learn to work around bureaucratic restrictions and must learn to persist in the face of overwhelmingly repressive corporate challenges…and especially repressive management egos which innovators may need to bruise along the way toward successful implementation.

Giving up is not an option, provided the idea is worthy. In my first month on the job as manager, I was immature in the art of stick handling around corporate bureaucracy. Because of that inexperience, I failed a brilliant chemist who, failing to find a champion within his own division, willingly crossed divisional charters and disrupted the politics of our company to seek my sponsorship. My willingness and extensive involvement, caused me to clash with a number of our highest, most authoritative executives.  Because of my inexperience for such matters, they squashed me. My passion and enthusiasm was not powerful enough. I failed that chemist. Fortunately, the chemist was not one who was easily dismayed. He believed so strongly in his innovation that he made a number of life-altering changes to move to Australia where he found a sponsor with more experience. Result? That chemist, and his sponsor, generated multi-millions  of dollars.  Australia recognized him and his innovation as one of its country’s top 100 innovations.

I used that as a learning experience to immerse myself in the art of championing innovations. I studied extensively on the subject of innovation and creativity. For the rest of my career I used what works. And what works is: perseverance, PROVIDED THE INNOVATION IS VALUABLE ENOUGH to warrant perseverance.