There was a time when cautious, conservative companies were investors’ best bets. No longer. Those that get to the top and stay there are grounded in creativity, constantly ideating and innovating. Forbes’ annual “Most Innovative Companies” list offers numerous cases in point.

In two just-published articles, innovation gurus – and curators of the list – Jeff Dyer and Hal Gregersen offer insight into how they measure innovation, as well as how innovation powerhouse Amazon continues to sustain and accelerate its pioneering spirit.

Amazon moved up this year to the third slot on the list from number 11 in 2016 – a “remarkable resurgence for the twenty-year-old company” and one Dyer and Gregersen attribute to its “working backwards” approach to pitching new ideas. Detailed in their article “How Does Amazon Stay At Day One?” the duo explains the process centered on three short documents you’d expect to be part of the product launch:

  1. A one-page press release (for an offering that doesn’t even exist and might never be commercialized)
  2. A six-page set of FAQs (frequently asked questions that customers can be anticipated to have, alongside straightforward answers)
  3. Additional descriptive materials (a portrayal of the customer experience, often a mockup or even a prototype)

Sounds simple, but it works. “It’s the heart of Amazon’s renowned innovation prowess” and culture of inventiveness that is driving the company’s innovation premium.

Contact us to learn more about how your business can create and implement a culture of creativity to reach the top of the innovation ranking.