4 Things Corporates can Learn from Start-Ups

In traditional corporate structures, innovation can be a daunting task because of the inherent rigidity in the processes that are in place. Many people often view innovating in these contexts as a formidable challenge that few conquer. Hierarchical frameworks still govern too many corporates, limiting the room for individuals to introduce fresh perspectives and suggest alternative approaches. 

Here are four things that corporates can learn from start-ups when it comes to innovation and intrapreneurship:

1. Flexibility and Agility  

Start-ups, with smaller teams and nimble organizational structure,  have the advantage of being able to adapt and respond quickly to market changes, customer feedback, and new opportunities. While corporations are often characterized by inflexible structures and resistance to change, start-ups thrive on the ability to adapt and embrace new opportunities.


2. A vision-oriented culture and entrepreneurial spirit

Start-ups are very often characterized by passion, intense enthusiasm, and willingness to take risks and push boundaries. Not only does this encourage problem-solving, but it also helps to stimulate proactivity and create an atmosphere where people are motivated and are working towards the same common goal.  


3. Speed and efficiency

Due to the extremely fast pace that rules the start-up world, it is normal to have to act fast and make decisions quickly. Unlike in many corporates, within a start-up setting, failure is seen as a stepping stone towards success. This enables time to iterate, learn and make strategic pivots, especially at the very start of the journey, as opposed to a large business where speedy operations are often hindered due to significant red tape. 


4. Access to diverse talent

Increasingly more people are intrigued by the work environments and culture of start-ups. Beyond greater freedom and flexibility that tend to come with it, the chance to have a real impact while being part of a start-up, as well as experiencing a steep learning curve; is often what draws people. 

However, while the inherent nature of being a start-up and all that comes with it, might facilitate innovation much more than for a large corporate; corporations have their advantages when it comes to establishing company-wide innovation. These include access to lots of operational data, a more diversified portfolio – even when it comes to innovation; as well as more resources to establish a sound innovation strategy and roadmap.


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