In today’s episode of the Idea to Value Podcast, we speak with Efosa Ojomo, co-author of the new book The Prosperity Paradox: How Innovation Can Lift Nations Out of Poverty, along with Professor Clayton Christensen and Karen Dillon.

We speak about why charity isn’t the most effective way to help countries develop, what most governments and policy makers get wrong about how to help drive prosperity in developing nations, and how these lessons can be applied to your business.

Topics covered in today’s episode:

  • 00:01:15 – How Efosa got started with innovation, and how a single book changed his life
  • 00:03:30 – Why charity donations aren’t effective at helping drive people out of poverty, and how these are called “Push Strategies” of development
  • 00:05:00 – How entrepreneurs in developing nations innovate and create markets, called the “Pull Strategies” of innovation
  • 00:09:00 – Every single country originally came from poverty. Prosperity is a process, and market-creating innovation is the driver
  • 00:11:00 – To create a mindset shift, you need to understand the language and policy impacts of the three types of innovation (sustaining, efficiency & market creating)
  • 00:12:30 – When you invest in efficiency innovations, they usually eliminate jobs
  • 00:15:00 – A case study of where the insurance industry innovated to provide a new product for low-income families, which has now been bought by about 50-60 million people
  • 00:18:00 – How Henry Ford innovated to drive prosperity in the USA, investing in cars before there were roads
  • 00:19:45 – How managers can use these lessons to help their companies innovate, by using examples of returns of investment to explain to executives for the long term growth and viability
  • 00:21:00 – You need different ways of managing innovations in your company, and not use the same metrics as the business as usual

Links mentioned in the episode:


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Creativity & Innovation expert: I help individuals and companies build their creativity and innovation capabilities, so you can develop the next breakthrough idea which customers love. Chief Editor of and Founder / CEO of Improvides Innovation Consulting. Coach / Speaker / Author / TEDx Speaker / Voted as one of the most influential innovation bloggers.