It is possible for Indian companies to innovate in a systematic manner, according to Rishikesha T. Krishnan, Professor of Corporate Strategy, Indian Institute of Management.
Mr. Krishnan, who was addressing a panel discussion here, pointed out that innovation rarely happens in India mainly due to the lack of scalability.
“The reason why India has no tanks or airplanes of its own is because of our dependence on jugaad or the quick-fix that companies love so often. When you solve a problem, no matter how brilliantly, with a work-around, the problem is that it cannot be scaled up,” he said.
Mr. Krishnan’s recently-released book, titled ‘8 steps to Innovation: Going from Jugaad to Excellence’, which he co-wrote with Vinay Dabholkar, points out how the first step in any sort of innovation process is believing that anyone can innovate. “There is a perception in Indian firms that you need a Steve Jobs to innovate, or that it has to be in the DNA of the company. On the contrary, it is something that can be cultivated and slowly managed. The cost of innovation, in terms of societal pressure, must be brought down first” he said.