Constraints That Drive Innovation | The Garage Group

Constraints That Drive Innovation


Budgets are smaller now than ever before, and they have less people to do the work. These constraints are an immense opportunity. The constraints are forcing new ways of doing things.

Every project and every dream has constraints. Some constraints that you may face are financial, time, or human capital. Instead of griping and complaining about the constraints, embrace them and experience the freedom to be had on the other side.

In fact, an initiative or project without constraints can be daunting. If everything is in scope, where do you start? Likely, the end result will not be relevant, effective or feasible.

Some of our favorite projects and even our own in-house innovations were borne out of identifying the constraints and getting really honest about them. A recent research project had the time constraints of taking less than 4 business days and costing less than $10K against a critical business question. When we rolled up our sleeves and got smart and scrappy about what really needed to be true, we found other variables that could be flexed on. Did we need a statistically relevant sample? No. We looked at hundreds of consumer comments and did some thinking. The result is a change in how a retailer did shelving in a category just a month or so later.

Good entrepreneurs get honest about their constraints and they embrace them and use them to more closely define what they’re innovating against. We’d love to hear about times you have experienced freedom in embracing constraints.

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