In this blog and in our innovation programs we don’t emphasize leadership.  But leadership and innovation are tied closely together.  Steve Jobs stated that “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.”   In fact, all successful innovators are leaders.  In addition, innovation is a key for a company to be a leader in the marketplace. 

That innovation leads to market leadership is easy to see.  The iPad is the best current example of how innovation can create a market leader.  The iPad was able to get into the tablet market first and everyone else is still trying to catch up. 

Innovation creates leaders.  For the most part, the study of innovators is the study of leaders.  To take your invention to market you will almost always need a team, and teams need leaders.  Edison is thought of as an innovator, rather than a leader.  But, he led everything from small research teams to multinational corporations.

So as you take time to improve your ability to innovate, look at yourself, your company or your team.  Are you prepared to lead innovation?  Improving your leadership may be the part of innovation that you are missing and the key to your success.