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How difficult is it for your organization to innovate and come up with new ideas? Sometimes it might seem impossible when it feels like all the good ideas are already taken. Normally, advancements in technology are a primary fuel for innovation within a company. If you aren’t feeling inspired, there are several new ways you can approach innovation. Here are three ideas.
If you ever feel that you aren’t making enough of a splash in the market, just remember that you’re not alone. Many organizations often have the same issue when it comes to innovation. Just like inspiration, it comes and goes in cycles. When a business grows, it might lose track of finding better solutions due to their continued success with proven solutions that work. This can hinder their ability to further expand. You’ve heard the saying, “Without risk there is no reward,” and in this case, it’s true.
Innovation and Acquisition
One way you can improve innovation in your company is through acquisition. The downside of innovation via acquisition is that it can be costly and difficult to get used to. There’s the cost of purchasing a company, as well as two different business models that might conflict. You can’t just buy a company and force it to comply with your current strategy right off the bat. Plus, if you’re having trouble with innovation, and you try to impose the same principles upon your purchased company, they’ll also have trouble with innovation, making it even more difficult to get anything done. The innovation will be short-lived or nonexistent, and you’ll be stuck with the same problem you had in the first place, only with a lot less coin in your pocket.
Take, for instance, Dell’s acquisition of certain aspects of IBM servers. This is the proper way to fuel innovation through acquisition. Find the value that you’re looking for in an acquisition, and hold onto it. Protect it and let it transform the way your organization does business. Use your available resources to help the endeavor succeed.
Skunkworks: Groups Focused on Innovation
Another way to enhance innovation is through the concept of skunkworks. This is when you put together a team that specializes in the concept of innovation. By creating a separate firm within your organization dedicated to coming up with game-changing ideas, you clear them to create and implement ideas that aren’t restricted by your corporate policies, effectively allowing the skunkworks group to act as a startup. One example of this is how EMC’s Pivotal Labs functions in order to create new products.
Innovation and Friendly Competition
Sometimes all innovation needs is a gentle push in the right direction from internal competition. In order to foster innovation in this fashion, you can use certain competitions designed to reward workers with bonuses. Or, you can use your local competition to fuel innovation similar to the way Dell does with its annual Innovation Day. It’s a reality show-like program where multiple companies compete for a fully-funded innovation trial. The winning company gets the prize of springboarding into a full-sized company which includes further funding. An incentive like this is sure to motivate your team.
Ultimately, one of the best ways you can boost innovation is by fueling it with technology best practices. NTConnections can equip your business with the technology to develop new ideas. Give us a call at (703) 288-9767 to learn more.