These days, every established company is at risk of having itsindustry–and its own business–disrupted by a startup. Cognizant of this,companies devote a lot of time to talking about how important it isto innovate. But here's the truth: most companies can't innovatebecause everyone is paid to maintain the status quo.


This is the single biggest reason companies fail to do anythingnew or exciting. You and everyone else are maxed out making sureyour company is doing what it's supposed to do; innovation is whatthe weekends are for.


Despite the real risk involved, this actually makes sense.Companies are set up to do one thing very well. That's the businessthey're in. All of the roles in the company are defined andstructured to create the best environment for doing that one thingas efficiently as possible. The number of people employed by thecompany fluctuates with the workload. More work, more people. Toomany people and too little work means layoffs or mismanagement.Success is doing the same thing you've always done, just a littlebit better, achieving just a few more sales or shaving a hair offof costs. Change is discouraged by time constraints and thestifling number of approvals needed. Failure is punishable by pinkslip. Every day is the same.


Yet, today, your entire industry can change in the space of aheadline. If your business can't innovate, it won't survive whenthe startup in the garage across town that doesn't have to answerto your shareholders does all the things legal has been telling youthat you can't do, all the things that you don't have time for.It's never been more urgent to stop talking about innovation andactually start doing things differently. And, with digital, theopportunities have never been greater. Instead of innovating onyour weekends, overcome the structural impediments and timeconstraints to real change by approaching innovation from twodirections: outside-in and inside-out. Read the complete Fast Company blog post to learn moreabout the essential ingredients for the recipe ofinnovation.

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