In a world where everyone needs to do more with less, businesses need to be ready to jump on innovation opportunities and move fast in the face of change. But is it enough to just keep up? Doing so may help you survive, but what if you want to thrive?
The companies that get ahead of the game are ‘rapid innovators’ – they anticipate tomorrow and deliver today. They don’t have a crystal ball, but they do follow some key steps.The companies that get ahead of the game are ‘rapid innovators’ Click To Tweet
Know what innovation looks like
Can you develop new business models that deliver products and services more efficiently?
How can you make existing products and services slightly better to keep customers continuously engaged?
What new product or service can you provide that customers didn’t know they needed?
Lead from the top down
CEOs need to perpetually promote innovation and encourage employees to be bold, confident, and forthcoming with their ideas. Employees need to grasp the concept of failing fast and be comfortable with it in their pursuit to innovate.Employees need to grasp the concept of failing fast and be comfortable with it. Click To Tweet
Engage change agents
Change agents aren’t necessarily part of your organisation’s leadership team. More often than not, your change agents will be in different roles, from various departments, and in different locations. Your change agents can help your business stay more attuned to evolving markets, make informed decisions, and explore new avenues for driving business growth and value.
Provide a platform
Leading organisations are investing in platforms and programs for improving teamwork, communications and sustaining innovation.
The best ideas aren’t going to get any traction if the value they bring to the organisation isn’t made clear, and these need to be articulated and shared. Your workforce knows how to come up with ideas, but they need a place to pitch them.
Explore options for collaborative spaces where people can easily share their suggestions.
And don’t be afraid to encourage bold and ambitious ideas.Leading organisations are investing in platforms and programs for improving teamwork, communications and sustaining innovation. Click To Tweet
Move fast, fail fast
We naturally tend to associate innovation with the future, which can be both helpful and a hindrance. On one hand, it’s always good to be thinking about and planning your direction. On the other, it’s all too easy to procrastinate.
Pursue both long and short-term projects. Some should be incremental and close to the company’s core operations, designed to maintain competitiveness. Others, looking further out – aimed at engaging new customers or inventing additional things to sell to current customers.
Bring your customers along for the ride
Surprising and delighting our customers is the endgame, but why not get them involved from the start?
Create an exclusive community for selected customers. Solicit ideas and seek feedback. Many people welcome the opportunity to help shape future products and services (especially if they’re also an end user).
I’m a bit of a tech nerd, and love testing new features out with various apps, tools and software. I’m a beta tester for Google, Evernote, Facebook and Instagram, meaning I often get to try new things with these services before everyone else. But because I’m a big advocate for these brands and products, it gives me a thrill to help make them better.
Never underestimate your customers or users – these are the very people who buy or use your solutions, and listening to them every step of the way will help ensure success.
Innovation isn’t just about cutting-edge breakthroughs, game-changing technologies, ongoing learning, or experimenting. Innovation is the process of constantly reinventing yourself, and fostering fondness for change in your business. It is not a one-time activity. It’s an ongoing practice that tests our resiliency and capacity to adapt.Innovation is the process of constantly reinventing yourself, and fostering fondness for change in your business. Click To Tweet
Anticipating the customers’ needs of tomorrow and delivering them today isn’t as challenging as it seems. This is what the best of the best do, and have done for years. There’s no reason why you can’t do the same.
Content marketer, blogger, author and tech geek.