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The Innovator's Dilemma

By Karrie Hawbaker

Public Relations Manager

Posted:  10/11/2012 5:21 PM


Today we welcome back Lane Desborough, a product strategist here at Medtronic, to talk about how, as a company, we must continue to challenge ourselves to innovate for people with diabetes. In the video below Lane mentions one of his favorite books, The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton Christenson.

Want to win a copy of Christenson’s book? Just leave a comment below and we’ll randomly pick three winners to receive the book!



Jerry B. Nolan

Posted on Thu Oct 11 18:11:57 GMT 2012

This is a true and very necessary concern in any industry but especially so in insulin pumps and perifrial accessories, such as CGM's. Artificial pancreas will be here sooner than we can believe and I for one, can't wait!!

Scott K. Johnson

Posted on Thu Oct 11 18:23:45 GMT 2012

So glad to see Lane's Whiteboard again! I'm a huge fan of all things Lane, and got a lot from this post. Would love to check out Christenson's book!

Thanks guys!

Julia Inestroza

Posted on Thu Oct 11 18:31:08 GMT 2012

This is a great topic, especially for Medtronic. As the incumbent it would be great for you to reach out to your customers and create user groups that can help you further develop your products to actually meet the needs of customers. The mySentry, while a great initial idea, fails to really serve a substantial purpose in the management of my preschool aged daughter's diabetes. To have something that could relay information via cellular to an online monitoring site that I could check on remotely, now that's great innovation.

Denise cameron

Posted on Thu Oct 11 20:49:24 GMT 2012

I appreciate Medtronic's efforts to stay one step ahead. Having had diabetes since 1985, management has come leaps and bounds! Products are available today that ween't even dreamed of then. Keep up the hard work!

Terri Lanigan

Posted on Thu Oct 11 21:07:18 GMT 2012

I can't wait to read this. An artificial pancreas may be too late for me but OOO, the wonders for youngsters!

Lane Desborough

Posted on Thu Oct 11 21:24:28 GMT 2012

I just returned last week from India, where I was doing volunteer work in the area gestational diabetes data mining. Along with the rest of the Medtronic team, we spent nearly three weeks in Chennai and got to see, first hand, the challenges and opportunities associated with living with diabetes in a developing nation.

p.s. Innovation is alive and well in India. They even have a word for it: jugaad.

Lucianne Davis

Posted on Fri Oct 12 09:44:43 GMT 2012

I have been a type 1 diabetic since 1968, have seen diabetes come full circle with treatment and am so glad MiniMed Medtronic has changed my life for the better. I've been pumping for the past 20 yrs. Keep up the great work MM & M. Thanks

Steve Roche

Posted on Fri Oct 12 13:14:41 GMT 2012

The products will continue to get better. After 46 years with type 1, I still seem to believe that the cure is only 5 years away.


Posted on Fri Oct 12 15:08:55 GMT 2012

Love hearing Lane. Keep his brilliance coming.

This in particular is a wonderful topic. I love the idea of self disruption and self challenging creativity.

Kelly Close

Posted on Fri Oct 12 15:41:41 GMT 2012

Lane is amazing to hear and I hope he inspires the new Medtronic CEO to increase the focus even further on diabetes, both in emerging countries and elsewhere. I also hope Medtronic can help the entire industry progress - there is so much the field can do collectively as well as individually. Insulin delivery has so many complexities - thank you for continuing to try to increase the utility of our tools for us as we all strive for better, easier, more normal diabetes management. Thank you also for paying attention to all of us, not just the patients who are easiest to help!

Postscript on MySentry - it's also key for us as patients to be realistic. The strides the field has made in CGM all stands on the shoulders of v early stage tech that was v hard to use, relatively speaking (CGMS Gold), compared to what we have today and what is coming. But that first technology made today and the future possible - the disruptive tech of the future (open loop?) stands on the shoulders of what was done early on so I think a measure of gratitude for early stage tech along with constructive criticism is in order! Thank you Lane for all your inspiring work in this field and to your family for the support they give you.

Scott E

Posted on Mon Oct 15 12:55:55 GMT 2012

With all the other "stuff" that comes along with innovation, trying to be innovative is a tough pill to swallow. There are all sorts of issues with liability, regulation, cost, protection of intellectual property, and so on. For instance, Apple was "innovative" with their Mac and IOS platforms, but Windows and Android took those innovations and ran even further with it. I wish there was such a thing as "innovation without boundaries" where we could just make new stuff and make our lives better. I wouldn't give up our capitalist society for anything, but this is a sad consequence of that marketplace.

Annie M.

Posted on Wed Oct 24 00:55:03 GMT 2012

Good to have Lane back as it is always interesting to hear the updates and new products Medtronic has to offer or are on the hoizon. I myself am waiting for a new and improved CGMS with shorter needle insertion and better sensing, closer to whole blood.
Keep up the good work!


Posted on Thu Nov 01 00:21:07 GMT 2012

Thank you everybody for your participation and wonderful comments. We loved all your comments so much, so we managed to find books for all of you who have already commented. Congratulations, you’re all winners! We’ll be contacting each of you individually for the best address to mail your copy of Christenson’s book.

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