Use the crisis as a catalyst for innovation

Use the crisis as a catalyst for innovation

Often, in difficult times, people demonstrate a focus on completing tasks and activities that deliver more value and really matter.

By Óscar Trujillo Ramos

A catalyst is a substance or element that plays an accelerating role in a reaction. As humans, the first reaction to danger is to freeze. Apply the brake. After all, stopping and not moving forward is guaranteeing security, right?

Conversely, for many companies stopping, pausing, or saying “no” can be even more risky. Especially in times when society, the world and business are changing at a rapid pace. How can we progress in the midst of the crisis? Taking advantage of the moment, taking effective actions and creating a plan for our progress.

At Solunatec we know that Mexicans triumph over adversity, we become strong through difficult situations and we innovate as we deal with the problems we encounter along the way. In this time of crisis, instead of stopping, it is time to act.

Acting is how we create results, results guide us to make decisions, to make changes to adapt and to take better actions in the future. It is a counterintuitive approach, something that goes against our intuition; the only way to get results is by taking action. We must start with the simple, learn and force our way in the face of uncertainty. Stopping you means you are not learning.

During times without crisis we fall into routine. Operations guide our days and many bad practices are inserted into our teams. There are many initiatives in progress to improve, but we never finish any. Often in tough times, when the stakes are high and there is a sense of urgency, people demonstrate a focus on completing tasks and activities that deliver more value and really matter.

The sense of urgency creates pressure. And we can decide to step aside, pray and wait for the storm to pass or be encouraged to take risks, balance security and speed to succeed in the face of uncertainty. If we stop, we don’t learn. If you are afraid of failing, you will fail your customers and be behind the competition.

What are the elements for our game plan? Firstly, have a clear picture of what your priorities are; define why they are important. Then create the actions that will lead you to that goal. Accept that there will be many variables and unexpected things. Define expectations for your team and declare that it is time to put your values ​​into practice. Make sure your team has a safe space where they can share and clarify all doubts and errors. The higher the quality of the information shared, the quality of the decisions we make will also be higher.

In this situation, the concept of Minimum Viable Product (MVP) becomes relevant. An MVP is the version of a product or idea that allows you to collect as much learning with the least possible investment. It is commonly used to assess market viability based on feedback from users or customers. If you have an idea, today is the time to act.

Sometimes we need a shock, something that breaks the system to abandon the status quo, change paradigms, and create new ideas through continuous innovation. Quoting Winston Churchill, “A good crisis is never wasted.”


Barry O’Reilly. (2020). Don’t Let a Good Crisis Go to Waste. Instead, Use It as a Catalyst for Innovation.

May 3, 2020, de SingularityHub


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