According to Jones’ debut business book, the world is made up of dreamers and doers, and an organization needs both to succeed.
Jones, the founder of online travel agency Travelocity and chairman of Kayak.com, shares his wisdom on how to inspire innovation in the business world. Drawing from years of corporate experience, he emphasizes the need for business leaders to be able to adapt, noting that business models must evolve with the times to stay relevant; for example, he highlights how innovative ideas transformed the publishing and music industries. He also notes the importance of building a team, including hiring people who “don’t fit in”: “You want people who aren’t like you…you want people who won’t agree with you. Smart people who challenge you, stretch you.” The team should include fresh faces as well as experienced industry insiders, he writes. Jones also urges readers to create a culture that rewards innovation, solicits and selects the best ideas, and works to increase innovative thinking, particularly in large corporations. Chapters are short and to the point, each beginning with a quote, followed by advice, which is in turn supported by a real-life anecdote. “Questions to Kick-Start Innovation” end each chapter—and include questions such as, “What guidelines do you set when discussing errors so the focus is on finding solutions, not fault?”—creating an interactive, workbooklike experience for the reader. Throughout, Jones encourages risk-taking, asserting that risks and failure are critical growth experiences that ultimately lead to great innovation: “Do you celebrate failure as well as success? Well, if you don’t celebrate it, do you at least learn from it?”
A quick and inspiring take on building innovation from the ground up.