Why Implementing Corporate Innovation Seems so Difficult
As a business owner, embracing ideas that are destined to help your company achieve sustained success should be an ongoing priority. For that reason, corporate innovation is a concept that can no longer be ignored.
In truth, it's something you’ve probably wanted to implement for a while. Unfortunately, a series of obstacles could stand in your path. This quick guide will help identify those pitfalls and build a strategy to overcome them.
What is corporate innovation?
Forbes describes corporate innovation as “having out-of-the-box thinking as a strategy within your business”. Innovation could relate to the product, division, or overall business model. In many cases, it will disrupt the industry by avoiding expectations to deliver the extraordinary.
When you look at the big success stories of the 21st century, innovation is a common feature. Appreciating it is one thing, but achieving it is another.
Why do companies struggle to implement corporate innovation?
Given the obvious benefits of standing out from the crowd, most companies would benefit from increased innovation. Here are six reasons why many companies resist it.
1. Companies cultivate a fear of failure
Research shows that 95% of business innovations will fail. It is a simple fact that will instantly stop many company owners and C-level execs from supporting innovation. In essence, the fear of failure holds them back.
Creating a situation where companies accept failure as a step on the road to success is advised. And it must spread to team members so that they can be psychologically safe.
2. Innovation isn’t (usually) measurable
We live in a data-driven world. The results of innovation often aren’t as immediately apparent. However, tools like KICKBOX make it trackable. Innovation time can organically grow as an upshot.
Vicky Zachareli says: “KICKBOX helps because it’s something that's measurable and very clear. And you can split the time dedicated to innovation however you want - it could be one day per week or 1 hour per day.” It makes it far easier to justify the efforts.
3. Innovation needs to be company-wide
Corporate innovation isn’t just about relying on one or two people. It should encourage intrapreneurship from all workers. It is a hallmark of an adaptive culture, which is one of the key features linked to innovative endeavors.
Besides, company-wide innovation unites teams and employees at different levels. Simultaneously, an increased sense of value can inspire more innovative ideas.
4. Workers have limiting beliefs
Even if there is the psychological safety for people to suggest ideas, innovations that are instantly knocked back have very little chance of success.
Looking at the negatives and limitations rather than the possibilities is a major issue for many companies. If senior employees say “that’s not possible” or “that will never generate a profit”, you must learn to challenge the limiting beliefs.
5. It’s hard to adapt
As stated, an adaptive culture is key. However, it’s very easy to fall into the trap of “don’t fix what isn’t broken”. Even established companies like CSS have shown that it is important to keep moving. Otherwise, a project can be damaged by a single obstacle.
It’s important to separate the journey until now with the steps that are needed to achieve the next milestone. When this happens, innovations are better aligned with company objectives.
6. Innovation doesn’t lead to real results
While innovation is essential for any business or organization that wants to stay competitive, it's important to remember that innovation itself is not enough. Ideas need to be put into practice in order to create real results. This means that organizations need to invest not only in innovation but also in execution. Without both, businesses will struggle to achieve their goals and may even end up falling behind their competitors. So, while innovation is critical, it's only part of the equation. Execution is just as important if not more so. Organizations that can master both will be the ones that succeed in today's marketplace.
Tools like KICKBOX encourage analysis of ideas before using collaborative and iterative approaches to make things happen. To find out how your business can use it to support corporate innovation, contact rready today.