This is the last post in a 7-part Profitability series coinciding with the July 14 release of my new book, Profit In Plain Sight: The Proven Leadership Path to Unlock Profit Passion and Growth by New York publisher Morgan James, AND the accompanying 2015 Return on People Benchmark Report that will help you shatter your profitability speed limits, set the bar higher, and achieve your new goals.

Part 7: How to Trigger the Wildcard for Growth and Competitive Advantage: Innovate for Value.

How does Apple win? By leveraging every single one of the 21 low-risk, low-cost paths to innovation outlined in my new book, Profit in Plain Sight. But here’s the kicker… I have applied every single one of those to my own solopreneur consulting business! So whether you’re a large company or a small company, you’re going to find some game-changing takeaways in the two straightforward models you’ll find in the Innovation chapter.

So on July 14th, I want you to pick up a copy of Profit in Plain Sight on Amazon, claim over $500 in bonuses (some GREAT ones!) and find out more about what could be the wildcard in your business. The fun part is that many of these innovations are stealthy… and therefore impossible for your competitors to clone!

C’mon… you know you have Innovation on your to do list… you know that you need some action plans to stay ahead of your competition… you might even have caught yourself saying “why didn’t we think of that” the last time they came up with something innovative.

But here’s the challenge. Most companies have no roadmap for building a process of innovation into their everyday business practices. So it stays on the To Do list. Or worse, “suggestion boxes” are implemented, “me to” copycat efforts are attempted, or big bucks are spent on R&D trying to come up with the “next big thing” that will be a hit it out of the ballpark win. And all of those well-intentioned efforts either produce a series of half-baked ideas or worse, the dreaded “invention”. Cool inventions tend to sit on the shelf unsold. Innovation, on the other hand, sells like hotcakes.

Once you’ve worked your way through the Action Plans at the end of the preceding chapters in Profit In Plain Sight, you’ll be ready for breakthrough innovations, because you’ll have all the information you need to safe your customers time, save or make them money, solve the business challenges they’re dealing with, create feel-goods, or provide peace of mind. And typically, customers are eager and willing to pay for all of those things. Best of all, these are subtle innovations that are hard for competitors to even figure out, let along copy, unlike conventional new-product innovations which are duplicated in a heartbeat. Sounds like a low-risk, low-cost, hit it out of the ballpark win to me!

Strangely enough, in the days when I was teaching Innovation as part of an MBA course at the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia, I had a student who had been taught that creative thinking was the key to innovation and absolutely resisted any type of structured thinking as an effective strategy to systematically explore new opportunities… until he had to use the two structures I share in the book as part of his internship. Well, let’s just say that when he saw how many valuable ideas emerged from a structured approach to creativity, he became a convert. I hope you will be too.

What’s the greatest little innovation you ever developed in your business… or is this still on the To Do List?