National Innovation Day: thoughts from Intel Ignite

On National Innovation Day, Tzahi (Zack) Weisfeld, VP & GM of Intel Ignite, notes that startup founders are really at the heart of the innovation in the technology industry.

National Innovation Day is a day dedicated to celebrating and encouraging innovation. It's a day that aims to inspire individuals and organisations across various sectors to embrace creativity and innovation in their work. The day recognises the importance of innovation in driving economic growth, solving complex problems, and improving the quality of life.

National Innovation Day serves as a reminder of the power of new ideas and the potential for transformative changes they bring. It encourages people to think outside the box, explore new possibilities, and take bold steps towards developing novel solutions.

The day is an opportunity to acknowledge the contributions of inventors, entrepreneurs, and thinkers who have paved the way for progress through their inventive ideas and to motivate future generations to pursue innovation with passion and determination. It underscores the collective effort required to foster an environment that nurtures creativity, supports risk-taking, and celebrates the achievements of those who dare to innovate.

Weisfeld notes: “Innovation has, and always will be, a driving force for growth and success in today’s fast-paced world. This February 16th, on National Innovation Day, it’s important that we recognise and credit the disruptors with world-changing ideas – the entrepreneurs and founders who have pioneered solutions that are bringing positive change and impact to society on a daily basis. 

“With all the noise in the technology industry today, highly dynamic companies that are constantly evolving their technology products and redesigning their roadmaps to deliver world-changing solutions are the ones that are standing out. By pushing the boundaries of what is currently possible, more companies are breaking through in their industries as they seek to solve the problems of tomorrow.

“I believe today’s generation of startup founders are well suited to completely redefine innovation and ignite the future of deep tech. Technologies like artificial intelligence, quantum and Cloud computing, and climate technologies often get the most attention, and they have the potential to transform in unexpected places. But we are also seeing more startup founders penetrating established and highly regulated markets – such as aerospace and defence – that were once harder to infiltrate. Deep tech platforms are becoming more mainstream and the founders who fuel their advances are transforming these industries for good, making them more agile and helping solve some of the world’s biggest problems.

“To continue these instrumental changes, mentorship in the startup ecosystem is critical. Having been in both the mentor and mentee role throughout my career, I’ve realised having a supportive network and guidance from those who have been down the same path is invaluable. At Intel Ignite, we’re empowering founders and cultivating fearlessness across the innovation ecosystem. That starts with people. Founders are the engines of innovation and mentorship gives them the direction and unparalleled advice to succeed in a challenging market. It’s this synergy between founders and mentors in the community that pushes innovation forward.

“Furthermore, the agile mindset and passion demonstrated by startups and their founders has huge potential to upend traditional ways of thinking at large corporations. This is something we have seen first-hand at Intel – where corporate employees mentor founders in our accelerator program. Intel employees are reinvigorated following mentor meetings and take that innovative mindset back to their day jobs. It not only boosts their work product but the whole company culture is energised.

“Startup founders are really at the heart of the innovation in the technology industry and will continue to be moving forward. This National Innovation Day, I hope we can share our appreciation for both past and present startup founders who are fuelling technological innovation globally and making this world a better place in which to live. I also hope that Innovation Day can serve as an inspiration for younger generations to pursue their dreams to be innovators and disruptors and ignite the future of world-changing tech.”