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Welcome to the New Lantern blog. Our goal is to shine light on leading innovators and creative artists, and how your business can learn and profit from them. Companies large, medium, and small can benefit from employees who think more creatively. New Lantern may be just the source of inspiration your company needs to spark more innovative products, services, and processes.

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Can-Do Innovation

Posted by on May 26, 2010 at 9:10 pm

DuPont announced yesterday the winners of its 22nd DuPont Awards for Packaging and Innovation. Granted, the DuPont Awards do not yet have quite the cachet of the Academy Awards or the Pulitzer Prize, but they do represent the pinnacle of extraordinary achievement in “packaging materials, technology and service innovations.”

This year, Alcoa Inc. and Exal Corporation took home one of the top “Diamond Winner” awards for their new aluminum bottle, which offers a lighter, stronger, cheaper, 100 percent recyclable container, referred to as the “”Coil-to-Can” or “C2C” bottle. The new, high-tech bottle uses Alcoa’s bottlestock sheet and Exal’s C2C manufacturing technology.

Exal launched the C2C aluminum bottle in 2008, which is now used by companies like Coca-Cola, ESKA Still and Sparking Water of Canada, and Anheuser-Busch.

Ok, so what’s the big deal you might be asking? A lot in my book. The DuPont Awards illustrate a point that I have made on a number of occasions in earlier blogs on this website. Innovation is not only about the iPad, or the latest flat-screen technology, or a Mars rover. It’s potentially about everything your company is doing.

Innovation can and should occur across every nook and cranny of your business — from better and more advanced products, to enhancements in services for customers and clients, to improvements in internal processes, and to the very packages that contain your company’s products.

In short, if your company’s executives and managers are not actively pursuing innovations in all these areas – and strongly incenting your employees to do so – you may not only be missing out on possible revenue and market share, you may end up missing the boat altogether.

So this coming weekend, when you find yourself sipping your favorite beverage from one of those newfangled, super-cold aluminum cans, think about how your company can be more creative across the board.

I can assure you that a new can-do approach to innovation will put your company on a path to bringing home your own awards.