Firefighting ≠ Innovation

Our Co-founder Brett St Clair shares interesting thoughts on the similarities (and differences) between internal fire-fighting and innovation.

When you’re out fighting fires, you are not innovating.

Innovation starts with failing. 

But failing and fighting fires are not the same thing. 

Fighting fires means reacting to situations that happen out of the blue. It’s reactive. Innovation, while also out of the blue, is based on your way of doing things. It’s proactive.

The reality is…

Innovation comes from a space of calm, a space of learning, a space of trying in a safe environment where you have the freedom to get things wrong. 

You’re able to try again.

And not just once or twice, or even a hundred times.

The beauty of innovation comes from its infinite nature. The ability to continuously test and see if your new idea resonates and solves a real world problem. It’s that ability to consistently solve problems and measure. 

To not only solve, but also test to ensure that those problems remain solved.

Whereas with firefighting, you’re reacting to problems. Stressing that the same fires might rekindle. That those same fires will give you that dopaminergic rush.

They are two very different worlds. 

As rebel technologists, it’s our job to identify how to stop those fires for good. It’s our job to prevent them from ever taking shape.

We need to replace that time with the correct thought processes so that the focus is based on how we innovate and rebuild our approach to technology as a whole.

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