February 10, 2008

Insights Can Be Found Anywhere

More on one of my favorite business stories of the year.  I just read an article on Ratan Tata and the insight that led him to develop the Tata Nano - India's amazing US$2,500 car.  In 2003, going home after work in Mumbai he saw a family of four on a motorcycle... man, wife, child and baby ( a very common scene in India) struggling in traffic under a torrential monsoon rain.  A simple image that became the driving force in the development of an affordable and safer means of transportation for an emerging consumer class.  

Many times we spend tons of money and time with focus groups and other research techniques looking for insights that can drive our innovation agenda.  The wonderful thing about insights is that they are anywhere....  it just takes a good eye and a curious mind to find them and make the right connections.  Sounds easy.... but it's a rare and fascinating talent.  The beauty about this story is that it started off with a great insight, but it took a man with tremendous vision, hard work, persistence and a strong desire to change the rules of the game to make the dream a reality.  It's worth watching Ratan Tata present the Tata Nano to the International press where he talks about his insight and how he overcame many obstacles and critics.  Click here for YouTube where you can see his presentations.

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