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The Five Characteristics of Successful Innovators

There is not much agreement about what makes an idea innovative, and what makes an innovative idea valuable. For example, discussions on whether the internet is a better invention than the wheel are more likely to reveal personal preferences than logical argumentation. Likewise, experts disagree on the type and level of innovation that is most beneficial for organizations. Somestudiessuggest that radical innovation (which does sound sexy) confers sustainable competitive advantages, butothersshow that “mild” innovation – think iPhone 5 rather than the original iPhone – is generally more effective, not least because it reduces market uncertainty. There is also inconclusive evidence on whether we should pay attention to consumers’ views, with somestudiesshowing that a customer focus is detrimental for innovation because it equates to playing catch-up, butothersarguing for it. Even Henry Ford’s famous quote on the subject – “if I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said fast…

Zuckerberg spills beans on what the ideal elements of a startup should be, says mistakes are bound to happen


Mark Zuckerberg's Townhall also saw questions on the startup culture in India and what is takes to start a new venture and build a separate entity.

To this, Facebook founder said, "Building a company is a hard task but if you decide to start a company and begin hiring, you lose flexibility.

The idea is to first start building something that you really care about and once you are confident it can turn into something good, that's when you start hiring. That will allow you the flexibility to growth and build the way you want to."

Talking about elements of an ideal startup, he said, "You need to care. Focus on what you want to do and the impact of what you want to change." 

He also spoke about challenges and mistakes.

"No matter what you do, you will make mistakes. Even I made them. Mistakes in hiring, mistakes while setting up the company, the product, anything that can be done wrong, I have committed those mistakes. I was a college student and no one is born with those skills. You learn from mistakes, from trial and error. But if you do it together with your team, you get the power to wade through a lot mistakes. If you are building something that is valuable for people, they will forgive you for all the mistakes. Do as much good as you can," said Zuckerberg.

He said there will be many cultural biases and differences that any one individual will find almost impossible to deal with. However, if one faces these very challenges with partners that are building the company along with him, then the results are infinitely better.

"That is why you need co founders, partners to help you through. To help you run the business successfully. There is no way a person can face all these challenges, two-three partners and a good team can power you to overcome rough patches," said Zuckerberg.

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