How can you become a business innovator?
Innovation follows the money.
Start your innovation management by allocating budget for it. Instead of concentrating on product innovation only, establish get the funds for business innovation.
Set some clear goals. Put someone with business innovation experience in charge of that budget and goals. Encourage thinking that crosses disciplines and silos. It is crucial. Plus, give the entire team one overarching objective – to invent the company that will put your present company out of business.
When you look at a problem that way you often discover that your greatest threat comes from outside your current market category. Or that winning in the future will require rethinking your business strategy.
Another way to think about this is to look at things through the eyes of your customer. But be objective with that! Ask yourself some questions. What is the totality of the experience they have with you today? What experiences are they having with other businesses in other categories that might be applied to yours? What alternatives they have? What are the opportunities to completely change the experience they have with your product or service?
The simple act of establishing a budget and focus for innovation will put you ahead of most of the small and midsized companies in the world, and many of the really big ones (nothing is impossible).
Putting some profit per cent allocation to transformative business innovation can be a very effective hedge against threats that you can’t see today, but could turn your tomorrow upside-down.
The bottom line is this: innovation needs to be more than a buzzword, or a company value in marketing materials. It needs to be integral to your business and threaded throughout everything you do, every department in your company. You can no longer compete on great products. Instead, be a business innovator and create a customer experience no one else can rival.
FYI some business innovations don’t cost a damn.
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