Denise recently sent me a video of Guy Kawasaki's Top Ten on Innovation. One of the items he discusses is the concept of "Jumping the Curve". Basically, according to Guy, innovation is really about "disruptive" innovation versus "incremental" innovation (i.e. 10X Better not 10% Better). Guy also explains that "real" innovation is emotive and will divide people. If you attempt to be all things to all people with your innovation, you will result is mediocrity and fail.
If his arguments are correct, what does this mean to those attempting to harness the power of the masses for innovation? Wouldn't Guy basically be saying, don't listen to the masses move to the radical and evangelize even if nobody else understands it (yet). Doesn't that sound a little counter to mass collaboration?
Not necessarily. Mass collaboration isn't for everything. The optimal decision making capability is based on a symbiotic relationship between the visionaries and the masses. Providing opportunity for millions in a way that channels their creative force is good. It helps identify the visionaries. Assuming that those same millions of people will push the "best" concepts forward will not always yield the optimal answer. Perhaps over time, the crowd would be able to select the best innovative concepts but by then it may be too late.
In any regards, if your serious about innovation, I suggest you watch Guy's video.