They lurk everywhere around us.  Great ideas, successful field tests, and exceptions that could and should disrupt. Take healthcare, for instance. We talk a lot about the need to transform healthcare, but the sad truth is we know what to do, but not how to get everyone collaborating to do it.  For every needed healthcare reform, there’s an exemplary program in operation somewhere in the country that shows not only what can be done, but how to do it.

To accelerate progress, we need to talk as much about adopting innovations already available as about creating something entirely new.  One of my favorite book titles emphasizes that point, “If only we knew what we know.” More rapid progress is at our fingertips. We need to learn about and accelerate adoption of what already has been shown to work. Of course, adoption is a process; most successful programs have idiosyncrasies driven by local leadership, cultures and situational variables. So we also must learn what we can import from those successes.

"If only we knew what we know"

Collaborations can help accelerate adoption. While business competitors might be hesitant to share (at least some things), non-profits, professions and governments stand to improve performance dramatically through accelerated adoption of proven innovations.

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