Successful innovation requires leveraging two conflicting business approaches into a single unified strategy, a goal that is unfortunately difficult for many companies to achieve. Doug Stone, a senior vice president at Maddock Douglas, writes that startups, which approach innovation in a future-focused "eventuality mode," are highly adept at spotting new trends and opportunities, but they are less comfortable operating in the past-oriented "reliability mode" that helps innovators proceed efficiently and discern fruitful projects from less worthy ones.

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