Presenting old ideas to older people

Consider the following order in time

  • Old idea
  • New idea
  • Newer idea

And then consider people in your organization

  • Retiring / planning to retire
  • Old / long timer
  • New age


Innovation development as a combination of above Excitement for the idea External Impact of the idea


Posing old ideas to older people or sometimes even retiring people Highly excited primarily because they forgot to listen when the old ideas were actually new in their time, and it feels new now Very less impact
Posing new ideas to old people Medium to low depending on acceptability of the idea itself and the listener’s ability to accommodate the idea mentally Medium to high impact
Posing new/newer ideas to the new age High and generally not worried about acceptability Impact cannot be determined

Oldies maintain a default level of excitement for all ideas old/new, that is slightly below the threshold of action.

New age has a strong affinity to newer ideas and can generally go beyond the threshold of action easily, but do not sustain the excitement for long as the ideas become aged.

Inference here is every innovation manager’s portfolio should flow with

  1. only ideas that are above the threshold of action,
  2. both newer ideas of today and the older ideas we forgot to listen

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