The status quo is expensive

Most organizations are pretty good at conducting a cost/benefit analysis for a contemplated new program. If a brand is considering investing in IT infra-structure or building a new concept store or making a strategic acquisition, the finance team will crank out cash flow analyses ad nauseam.

Executive teams will debate assumptions, argue over the appropriate discount rate and likely spin multiple scenarios to try to gauge the risk of saying “yes.”

Ultimately when the “no” comes, chances are it’s because the project or venture is deemed too expensive. Too much cash to invest, too much risk, too much of a distraction to the core business. You’ve heard all the reasons before.

But with all the time, energy and angst put into what happens if we say “yes” how often do we really contemplate what happens if we say “no?”

Maybe you’ve noticed that much of the incremental value created for consumers and investors comes from innovative start-ups that steal share from industry incumbents.

Maybe you’ve realized how quickly the world is changing and how the tried and true can become obsolete almost overnight.

Maybe you’ve witnessed your company fail to act soon enough and decisively enough in the face of new technology or rapidly evolving consumer demands.

Sure investing in innovation can be very expensive. But you are kidding yourself if you don’t think the status quo is pretty damn pricey as well.

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