Dominguez Benetton, DSc
Do you know what does it take to innovate?
First it takes plenty of proactive curiosity, just like the one children have. Curiosity is the key driver for creativity. Being creative is on itself powerful to have plenty of new ideas; but all those new ideas alone will very likely lead to nowhere.
It also takes some willingness to take healthy levels of risk. Little risks will typically lead to incremental advances, whereas stern risks lead to groundbreaking innovations. Sure, but risk of what? The risk to be wrong, unreasonable, questioned, criticized, opposed... at least.
A solid background can certainly compensate for unbounded creativity and risk. By the way, ventilate that what you think is a 'solid background' with true experts every now and then because odds are that it is not as solid as you may think. Get a mentor, no matter how expert you think you are.
Yet, even with a true solid background, being unconventional is a premise for innovation.
Of course, even the most brilliant and well-grounded ideas need to be executed. Half of the path towards innovation is hard work and having your own hands-on-experience. Furthermore, until that something new that has been invented does not get implemented, it is not truly innovation but only a failed creative journey. Innovation takes making value from your creative ideas.
So, it takes sometimes to fall and get up, repeatedly.
The pivotal transition from creativity to innovation culminates when you are able to share substantive insights of what you have achieved to that who is actually willing to put value on it.
If at first the idea is not absurd, then there will be no hope for it--Albert Einstein