Innovation: More than Just a Buzzword?

Merriam-Webster defines the word innovation as the introduction of something new; a new idea, method, or device. Today, we see innovation coming at us from all angles. While Silicon Valley may be the first place to come to mind when you heard the word innovation, it certainly isn’t the last.



Fast Company recently released their list of the Top 50 Most Innovative Companies of 2018. Among this list we see Apple coming in the #1 spot for “delivering the future today,” Marvel Studios in the #11 spot for “forging the future of media,” and even Graduate Hotels in the 50th spot for “bringing team spirit to university towns.” All of the companies on this list are in different industries, with different focuses, target audiences, company size and certainly company budget. So, what does innovation really mean then?


Steve Jobs said it best, “innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” All of these companies have in common visionary leaders who are leading by promoting innovation. Innovative thinking is crucial to being an effective leader. But it’s not just the people at the very top of these companies that promote new ways of thinking. Innovation pulses so deeply in the veins of all 50 of these organizations, that their unconventional thinking ultimately gets passed on to their consumers. That’s why we find ourselves delighted at a new Apple product, or we find our worldview challenged by the latest Marvel movie.  Without forward thinking and innovation nothing can change, and change is crucial to an organization’s success.


Fast Company followed up on its Top 50 Most Innovative Companies of 2018 to break down the Thirteen Lessons of Innovation to Guide You Through 2018. Their tips were pulled from their previous list of company’s tips and tricks, and we couldn’t agree more with them. A few of our favorites include the following:

  • Focused Intensity – Keeping your goals in sight based on a 90-day clock will help you stay focused in the short term. This focus will compound your innovative success in the long term.


  • Not the straight and narrow – Innovation isn’t a straight line, in fact it’s many steps forwards, backwards, sideways and sometimes upside down. If you can keep the faith and continue what you believe in, your customers will thank you. And you will thank yourself.


For us here at Dotted Line Collaborations, innovation means not being afraid of new ways of thinking. It means running full speed of ahead. It means being sharp and being ready. It means keeping the faith. We truly believe that in today’s world of constant change, innovation needs to be at the core of any marketer’s recommendations.


"Lauren Sweeney"

Lauren Sweeney is the Founder and CEO of Dotted Line Collaborations, a full-service marketing agency solving big brand problems from our headquarters in Richmond, Virginia. When Lauren’s not providing strategic direction for the firm or delivering results for our clients, Lauren is outdoors enjoying all that Richmond has to offer or traveling to a new and exciting destination.

To read more about our firm’s recent work, visit What We Do.



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