"A company which innovates has to look like a university"
Since he invented the cyclonic vacuum cleaner twenty years ago, James Dyson continues to perceive the innovation with all the dynamism and the energy of his debuts. But the vacuum cleaner without bag is first of all the success of a team. Around James Dyson, four engineers-designers, then awarded a diploma by Royal College of art, developed various prototypes. This group works even today on the elaboration of new products at Dyson.
At the beginning of this project, he still worked on the distribution of one of his other inventions, Ballbarrow. It was about a wheelbarrow with a big plastic ball molded in front, by way of wheel. This wheelbarrow knew a big success, but regrettably, very quickly, James Dyson had disputes with his shareholders and was forced to resell his parts of the company. He thus dashed into the development of a new idea: the cyclonic vacuum cleaner.
He lived every these year on some income pulled by the sale of his parts in Ballbarrow, as well as thanks to the financial support of his friends as Jeremy Fry and by the mortgage of his house. He dedicated all his time to his searches on the vacuum cleaner and thus had no regular income. His wife Deirdre gave lessons of art and drawing, and sold her own paintings to assure a minimum of income, especially since they had already three children.
How James Dyson conceives the management of the innovation in company?
Encourage the difference, question, question the standards. It is always this spirit which we cultivate, after ten years of success today, as in our debuts. We recruit many young people at the exit of the university because they are more open-minded, they were not deformed by the moulds of the other companies yet. The real innovation needs it. I apply in fact the first lesson of my mentor, the British inventor Jeremy Fry for whom "the enthusiasm and the intelligence are more important than the experience".
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