Ideas for innovation
Innovation can help businesses improve in a myriad of ways from product development to entering new markets.
Here are some top tips to achieve it
Create an ideas culture
Brainstorming shouldn’t just be the preserve of an away day: ideas are the lifeblood of an innovative company. Your staff know the business inside out as they are close to the action, so ask them for suggestions as to how to improve. Create an environment where people feel comfortable putting forward ideas, in all kinds of scenarios from meetings to an online suggestion box.
Bring new people in
While it’s tempting to hire in your likeness or surround yourself with yes men, business leaders would do well to employ people whose opinions you don’t necessarily agree with. When recruiting, embrace difference, whether that’s in terms of people’s educational backgrounds or what they do outside work. It could make your existing staff think differently too.
On board new tech
Whether it’s moving from paper to digital formats or taking your server out of the room in the corner and onto the cloud, innovative companies are always on the look out for the latest technology. They understand that far from fearing tech, it can in fact help them do business quicker and smarter, making them improve their bottom line and reduce costs at the same time.
Subcontracting sometimes has negative connotations but only if you lose control of the quality of service you provide. By outsourcing simple processes within your business, you might in fact be able to reach your objectives quicker than if everything is done in house. Outsourcing needn’t stop there, why not challenge an academic institution or a start up to develop new ideas for your business.
While it might feel like these days, the simplest transaction is followed up with a request for feedback, picking and choosing a time to find out what your customers really think could pay dividends. Find out what new features your customers would appreciate, whether that’s greater choice, new features or a less complicated service and you could be increasing your customers’ spend by a significant margin by making simple changes
Share the risk
Innovative companies aren’t afraid to fail, it’s the lifeblood of how they learn so cultivate an organisational culture that doesn’t penalise people for trying. Share the responsibility for innovating so everybody feels bought in to the process with the fewer layers of management the better. And when things do go right, reward staff and celebrate success.