They say it is innovations that create history, fix problems, transform moments, redefine initiative, reinvent, recycle, and embrace a radical evolutionary intent. People also add cheekily that it is innovators who are the madmen of our world, the mavericks, work while ignoring the real world, and insist on change. All I’d say here is that innovators make life smoother and innovations swivel an existence from the ‘cannot’ to the ‘can do’ mind-set.
Yes, innovations swivel
Let me explain this by adopting an example. The other day I was browsing the internet and stumbled upon an article that talked about the Gillette FlexBall technology described as ‘the biggest advance in the category since the introduction of five blades.’ That article went to the extent of saying that this technology is ‘shaving rebuilt’. I ordered one and murmured, ‘Hey! These people are claiming a lot. Let me see if their innovations really swivel or not.’
I have been using Gillette razors for years now… and I remember the time I was gifted my first fixed disposable razor to replace the conventional slide-in-the-two-faced-blade screw-the-handle razor that I had been using. The feeling was pure ecstasy and over time I hopped from the Sensor to the Mach series and finally landing with the Fusion series and loving the battery-operated gizmo. So this flexball wonder was eagerly awaited… more because I wanted to see if innovations and swivels can be connected.
By the way, Gillette began its journey from Boston and by 1903 had sold 51 razors and 168 blades… and with the millions who prefer this brand now, one can only imagine the sort of role that innovative indulgence has been playing all this while.
Talking of swivels, let me just say that human attention span is what swivels the most and easily and this is why we see people eagerly adopting any new entrant in the consumer goods market. However, it is those products that manage to trample the urge to copy a successful idea, that reign for a longer time… but even they need to keep innovating or restructuring their DNA to remain in the race. We see this happening more often in the volatile smartphone universe, the car arena, and the wearable technologies to mention a few. Yes sir, innovations powerfully swivel attention towards a product… and the Gillette Fusion ProGlide with New FlexBall Technology takes this dictum seriously as it proves that it makes maximum contact over contours and gets virtually every hair.
Innovations and the cult of glorified marketing gimmicks
Specky, my wife wasn’t so gung-ho about this shaving gizmo and wanted to dismiss them as the ‘glorified marketing gimmicks’ stories that do their round. I reminded her that tenets of marketing too were perpetually on an innovations swivel. ‘Look at the way companies are homing into blogging for more credible conversations with their audiences, both in the existing and in the yet-to-be-created segments. Blogging isn’t a glorified marketing gimmick. Blogging too is an innovative swivel that is making the other mediums wake up and consider convergence in a wider frame.’ Specky understood my analogy and replied, ‘I really did not want to sound like the wretched species that Voltaire wrote about and who walk on the well-trodden path always throwing stones at those who are showing a new road. May swivelling innovations never snivel, sniffle and snuffle.’
You are not a contortionist
You will not believe this, but I shaved twice in Specky’s presence just to see what she had to say… and also to see if this innovative swivel really helped.
As I shaved, Specky said, ‘Your face seems so adept at contorting itself as you shave.’ I know this. I see this every day in the mirror. My cheeks move in ways to help my razor glide over them or give them a better surface to mow, so to say. But as I hesitatingly used the new entrant from Gillette, I was soon able to move my wrist that held the razor, in ways that made me move my cheeks less and less.
‘Ah! You seem less of a contortionist now,’ said Specky, ‘another shave and you will have perfected the art of keeping your facial muscles still while shaving.’
I was happy.
And it was later that I read on the internet that this razor with its 5 thinner and finer blades made me tug and pull less and statistically I miss 20 percent fewer hairs. Well, the shave is also closer as the stubble gets 23 microns shorter. Now this is what pleased the mathematician and the stats-lover in Specky and she applauded this bit of information.
Swivel serves well
Innovations in shaving matter if they make shaving more effective… and this is what I experienced. Innovations matter if they are able to balance the carbon foot-print by making the adoption of an older technology possible… and the fact that all Fusion blades can be used on this razor, endorses this as an eco-sensitive idea. Innovations matter if they are able to swivel a mind from the ‘cannot’ to the ‘can do’ mode… and the example that I chose from the world of razors proves it well.
I guess it is time for an innovative swivel to create history!
14 September 2015