Research finds that changing the world takes just 10%

Scientists at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have found that when just 10 percent of the population holds an unshakable belief, their belief will always be adopted by the majority of the society. The scientists, used computational and analytical methods to discover the tipping point where a minority belief becomes the majority opinion. The finding has implications for the study and influence of societal interactions ranging from the spread of innovations to the movement of political ideals.

"When the number of committed opinion holders is below 10 percent, there is no visible progress in the spread of ideas. It would literally take the amount of time comparable to the age of the universe for this size group to reach the majority," said SCNARC Director Boleslaw Szymanski, the Claire and Roland Schmitt Distinguished Professor at Rensselaer. "Once that number grows above 10 percent, the idea spreads like flame."

This means that to enable a culture of innovation we just need to convert 10% of the culture that is resistant to the new way of working. Specifically this means we need to convert 10% of the 85% who are left brain logical or just 8.5%. If your organization has 1,000 employees you need to get 85 to hold an UNSHAKEABLE CONFIDENCE AND CAPABILITY to Innovate.

Our experience with over 35,000 Innovation Engineering students across thousands of organizations is that UNSHAKEABLE CONFIDENCE AND CAPABILITY does not come from reading a book, watching a video or attending a class to learn about a new way of innovating. UNSHAKEABLE BELIEF comes from application of the learning to REAL WORK. It is in the application that true CONFIDENCE AND CAPABILITY are built.

It's for this reason that we've designed our courses on campus to have Applications and Experience classes. AND, why by design - 93% of Innovation Engineering Certification work off campus is focused on APPLICATION. Application delivers short term ROI as strategic priorities are achieved faster and with less risk. AND, it delivers long term ROI as it changes the culture from one that is reactive to proactive.

Basically, the path to culture change is easy. All you have to do is to get 10% of the non-believers to certification. We've observed that when we achieve this - the culture of innovation sustains. When managers and leaders attend class "but don't do" - then the new mindset doesn't sustain.

So don't lose hope. The researchers found that until you hit about 10% it can look like nothing is happening - that your work is in vain. Keep moving forward... educate, enable, enroll the non believers.

If you'd like to learn more about the Innovation Engineering movement and courses visit . We have Innovation Engineering QUICK START (Blue Belt Certification) and MASTERY (Black Belt Certification) courses available this week, next week and in the weeks to come.