Innovation Isn’t Reinvention

Recently we’ve had the pleasure of partnering with several new (and exciting) startups:

  • Oasisiah is a faith-based nonprofit that declares vindication for children around the world through active awareness, sustainable community-building, and impactful resources.
  • Budget Ease is a powerfully simple online budgeting tool and mobile application that gives users the footing and foundation they need to spend wisely and reach financial goals.
  • RevolutionX is a P90x-exclusive gym offering group P90x and Insanity classes to fitness-conscious folks in the Indianapolis area.

There’s a common theme to each of these new ventures. Each entering into their respective markets, they’re all faced with some pretty stiff competition.

Oasisiah is combatting a virtually limitless number of do-good organizations all vying for donations and support. But instead of letting it hold them back, they’re focusing on how they can build a tribe of their own supporters through specific goals and tangible missions.

BudgetEase is paired with the likes of widely-used online tools like Mint and YNAB, but instead of letting it hold them back, they’re focused on building an insanely simple and effective tool that does one thing and one thing well – help you create a budget that you can actually follow.

RevolutionX is combatting not only other gyms in the area – they’re battling the very tool that is the foundation of their business-model. Their fiercest competition may well be potential gym-goers firing up the P90x DVD in their living room. But instead of letting it hold them back, they’re focused on the accountability and challenge their group-based classes will provide. 

You see, as Kristina Holly, founding executive director of the USC Stevens Center for Innovation and MIT’s Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation so aptly puts in this month’s issue of Entrepreneur Magazine:

“If you want to build an amazing company, it isn’t enough to create something disruptive or rebellious. New ideas are a dime a dozen. The real test is scaling your brainchild into a product with ubiquitous, tangible impact.”

Innovation isn’t reinventing the wheel. Innovation may very well be, and often is, about taking an existing problem and creating opportunity through offering real, tangible benefits and impact.

The three startups mentioned above are doing just that. Today I encourage you to take a look at what you’re doing (or what you want to be doing) and identify its innovation and impact.

Instead of focusing on innovation in the sense of creating something new, think about the ideas you have in front of you and make them work. 

PS, be on the lookout for the Oasisiah, BudgetEase, and RevolutionX  launching in the coming months!

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