Chances are your business is either a) growing revenue and opportunity or b) experiencing declining revenue and opportunity. Look around at your business and its teams. Is there a team that is always approaching you with new ideas? Are they good ideas or just distracting them from delivering their core function? Where is your IT infrastructure on the innovation scale? Still using 5+yr old desktops? Or is the entire business paperless and leveraging cloud technology?
Regardless of where you are, having a business culture that supports innovation will afford you new opportunities. We usually see a blended model within our client base. Technology driven companies have cutting edge devices, software & tools, but often their sales/marketing are underserved. Sales/marketing driven organizations often leave their technology/operations as the last to receive investment funds.
We recommend you create a cross-function innovation team made up of the innovators in multiple areas. Decisions can be made/shared with all constituents in mind. Need more revenue to fuel the business? This team will be responsible for coming up with 1, 2 or 3 plans to make it so. And, once the goal is achieved, attention can made to other areas of the business.
Implementation also becomes a company-wide effort. Finance can be more liberal with funding to support a cross-functional effort where the entire business is behind its success.
Before you innovate – protect and harden what’s in place today. Brainstorm goals against company, market and customer needs. Prioritize as a group to ensure buy-in. Implement and track publicly. Kill failing projects quickly. Celebrate your wins!