Did you know that innovation in business provides a tremendous competitive advantage? If you’re aiming at expanding your business, building your brand, delivering customer satisfaction and reaping a huge profit, then you need to innovate and inspire others to do the same.
As entrepreneur, one of the toughest challenges you’ll ever encounter is getting your people to think creatively. Successful innovation requires an open environment, a diverse source of ideas, and a fresh perspective while endeavoring to keep your everyday operations running smoothly.
Here are 10 ways of inspiring ideas and opportunities for innovation and growth.
#1: Face your fear of change
While consumers are always on the lookout for exciting new things and ideas, most business owners dread implementing new concepts. Create an open culture that allows challenging the status quo to help spawn a variety of innovative ideas.
#2: Listen to your clients
There will always be times when you will be short of creative energy. Create a focus group or take a survey online and listen to what your customers are saying about your brand.
#3: Brainstorm your employees
Ask your employees about what they think the company is doing well. Question them about what they think the company ought to be doing
#4: Encourage your employees to speak up
Invite each individual to speak up on what they think the organization is doing badly. Ask them how they would change things it were up to them to decide what to do. Apply the most worthwhile proposed solution immediately.
#5: Allow job rotation
Job rotation will help workers gain a wider perspective of your organization and help them gain valuable insight as to what strategies work and what do not with regard to delivering productivity and profit to your business.
#6: Don’t be afraid to do things differently
Do you simply conform to everyone? To be successful, you need to stand for what you believe in. Your determination to do things differently from what everyone else is doing is what makes you stand out from the rest of the competition. Be quick to identify and fill any untapped needs that your competitors may have missed.
#7: Hold an annual in-house innovation contest
An in-house innovation contest can be a fun way of encouraging your stakeholders to take an active part in innovation. You can divide your employees into teams and have each team work on a particular product or service niche.
#8: Add unusual services
One of the secrets to innovation success is to keep an eye for products or services that aren’t traditionally offered in your industry.
#9: Promote your idea
In 1975, a Kodak engineer invented the digital camera, but nobody understood why anyone would ever want to look at images on a TV screen and so they scrapped the idea. The lesson to be learned here is, don’t be like Kodak. Promote your innovative idea with all you’ve got.
#10: Eliminate fear of failure
Fear is the number one killer of innovation. When you have identified that fear dread of failure exists, immediately drive it out of your organization. Do not punish employees when their ideas fail to work or don’t “fit the mold.” Turn failure into something positive. Encourage your employees to use it as a learning experience and move on.
In light of today’s marketplace, the Internet and the rapidly rising global competition, the need for innovation is more vital than ever before. In the end, it is the innovation-focused business owner who will put their organization on a path of sustained growth and profitability.