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Being the Spark that Ignites Innovation

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Editor’s Note: At Johnson & Johnson, we occasionally like to share an ‘inside out’ perspective about our company and our employees. Recently, Martin Madden, Vice President of Research & Development and Innovation for Global Surgery, spoke at the Johnson & Johnson Global Surgery Research & Development Conference, an annual meeting of hundreds of colleagues who work in Global Surgery around the world. With the theme ‘Ignite Innovation,’ this meeting maintains a tradition that had taken place for nearly 70 years. We invite you to read excerpts of Martin’s remarks about how igniting innovation enhances our ability to address the needs of the patients we serve.

Martin’s remarks:

Welcome to Global Surgery Innovation Day 2015! Let’s talk for a minute about this year’s theme: Igniting Innovation. The theme speaks to so many elements of what we do. Historically, much of the Innovation we foster happens over the course of time. Our internal teams work closely with our physician partners to enhance and improve upon our products and technology platforms. This step-wise approach to innovation is a significant driver of growth. Most important, it is a major enabler in our ability to advance our portfolio and address the evolving needs of the patients we are all so privileged to serve.

In order to “ignite” something, you need to have a spark. And by bringing new ways of thinking and approaching challenges differently, each of us has the opportunity to be the spark every day. In Global Surgery, our innovation is not only the big, game changing ideas. We know firsthand that it’s all of those sparks that often lead to much bigger innovations.

Let’s talk for a moment about how a spark is ignited. The term “ignite” has two definitions:

  1. To start a fire, and
  2. To give life or energy to something.

Focusing on the second definition, adding life and energy to our commitment and our passion to identify and develop solutions for patients drives home the need for each of us to “be the spark.” We must work together in perfect combination to build upon our sparks, igniting innovation and sustaining it over time.

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