Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Innovation (Coaching/Training/Consulting) as a profession?

At some point in the history of humankind there was the profession of horse carriage driver. We can still see the modern ones offering rides (at some 60 $/hour or more) in a horse driven historic carriage in Philadelphia, New Orleans, New York and many other places with many tourists.

There must have been norms and rules and standards for joining the profession, and there certainly still are (probably many more) regulations for the modern ones also offering tourist guiding services.

The profession in itself got extinct though and rather shifted to being that of limousine driver with the technological changes making the automobile king. It survives as such, but our point is about something else. The act of driving a vehicle has little by little massively shifted from a profession to a habit. After all almost all of us carry a driver's license and drive on a more or less regular basis our own automobile, that is we drive ourselves without a driver, irrespective of who actually owns the vehicle.

Are therefore innovation coaches, trainers or consultants members of a profession? They certainly are, but what type of profession is it? We hold that maybe innovation should be like driving a vehicle. The goal seems to be that all of us should be "carrying" our 'innovative processes certified person' license in our wallet.

Does it not seem that the truly good innovation coaches, trainers and consultants are nothing else but the (self-propelled vehicle) driving school instructors in a world still living in a horse driven carriages time? Is this not a profession that shall strive hardest to fight to extinct itself as no longer necessary by its very nature and scope? After all, the minute everyone learns innovation well from an early age in elementary school, doesn't it become a second nature? Isn't then the future a point in which we do not need coaches and trainers, and we have learned to master innovation from Mom and Dad like we learned to ride a bicycle?

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