When we think about business and creation, we think first that the people running businesses are lauded as job creators. Or, perhaps, of the Austrian-born economist Joseph Schumpeter's enduring description of capitalism as "creative destruction."
What's too often overlooked is that so many businesses are themselves creative. Creativity isn't restricted to an obvious artistic field, like film or dance. Lots of companies not only make something out of nothing, they also structure reality in a way that few if any have seen before.
Take, for example, Adelle Archer of Eterneva, whom you'll meet as part of our Rising Stars cover package. Moved by the premature death of a mentor, Archer found a way to transform the ashes of a deceased loved one or pet into jewelry, a physical, daily way to keep the departed with us. That product may not be to everyone's taste, but as a creative act it can stand with a great song or painting.
There's a lot of equally impressive ingenuity elsewhere in this issue. Consider Intuition Robotics' ElliQ, a robot created to reduce the isolation experienced by too much of our elderly population. And the Naya pump, which is painstakingly engineered to reduce the discomfort of pumping breast milk.
Sometimes creativity comes not in the form of a new product but in a new method of delivering it. In "The Race to Reinvent Everything," Inc. editor-at-large Tom Foster takes a very detailed look at companies that sell everyday products--eyeglasses, razors--directly to consumers, a trend that in a few short years has upended retail in several industries. That, too, is a creative endeavor--even if, as Foster notes, this powerful new model is no guarantor of long-term success.
That sobering insight is a reminder that there will always be a tension between creation and profit. But it's a challenge that Inc. readers face every day. Here's to your mission, and your determination to experiment, assess, and get it right. And to our mission: to celebrate all you create, and help you every step of the way.
May is the month for Inc.'s annual GrowCo conference, held this year in New Orleans. Come learn key insights about growing your business from a distinguished roster of entrepreneurs, including Daymond John, Boxed co-founder Chieh Huang, and California Baby founder Jessica Iclisoy. There's still time to get tickets, at growco.inc.com.