We know that the economic crash of a few years ago, affected many businesses across the globe.
Lives were thrown upside down, careers were crushed, and the world was forced to give itself a major spring clean. Cobwebs of the past, were ritually brushed away to make way for a new dawn, though the spiders of capitalism have found new gaps in the ceilings of commerce and continue to weave new webs of financial opulence.
However as a consequence, intrapreneurship is becoming the new cool in business. It is the new corporate action hero, here to save the bottom line.
Integrating the principles of entrepreneurship into UK boardrooms is a badge of honour, no longer earned in the battlefields of breakfast networking sessions, swanky soirees and the loneliness of the home office, but in the innovation teams and creative minds of motivated soldiers, marching to the beat of the salary drum.
It is also essential and about time too!
The way that business is done has changed dramatically. Customers now have more than enough tools to dictate what they like, how they like it, when they like it, what they are prepared to pay for it and why they are not buying it from you.
To succeed, corporates now have to be more innovative to not only keep up with their own competitors in their key market sector but, to do so across diverse markets in order to be sustainable. It is no longer a them and us society – every corporate business must be able to influence the citizenship of others, not just satisfy shareholders.
In our business, we have seen an increase in demand of how we can help companies be more innovative with their CSR and Diversity strategies, but it is fundamentally clear that morality is not enough. Their customers are savvy enough to know that this is a business imperative, and the use of entrepreneurship in a corporate context creates a more tailored and bespoke solution for them.
More and more companies, are seeking to learn from icons of entrepreneurship – british stalwarts such as Richard Branson, who was once questioned about the price of milk and did not have a clue, yet is the head of, arguably, the greatest British company and brand EVER! Mavericks like the late Steve Jobs, who had a reputation for being mercenary in his vision and on those who did not see it, yet taught us that there is nothing greater in life that the power of self-belief to change the world!
Not every corporate is ready to be more intrapreneurial. The idea that being more dynamic and innovative as an organisation, will lead to an instant increase in productivity and, ultimately, a more healthier bottom line is imbalanced.
The stark reality, is that most companies need to review their own governance as a business, need to ensure the CEO is entrepreneurial by nature and that the organisation has the processes in place to harness the output of entrepreneurial staff. Like real entrepreneurs who are often skint, and live the type of abnormal life that many would not dare, an organisation wishing to be more intrapreneurial, must be willing become more of a risk taker, visionary, a more egotistical yet humble entity.
We all have the mental capacity to THINK like an entrepreneur. In the Hot500Club, young entrepreneurs are constantly told that whether you are working for yourself, or working for others or both, you have the ability to be innovative, to think outside the box, to search and find the solution to the problem, to help other companies to develop intrapreneurs in order to create more social impact.
But how can organisations grow, in their youthful phase of intrapreneurship? Here are 5 tips:
– Separate your company WHAT vs WHY: Your WHY is the purpose, the real goal, the overall impact or value you wish to create. Your WHAT are the tools, resources and efforts that you need to achieve your why.
– Executive teams must live and breathe the vision: You should be able to describe in detail, what your collective vision is – you must be able to almost taste it, smell it, know who will be there when you achieve it etc. It must be so clear, that it is as if you have already achieved it.
– Embrace your fear: Fear is a state of mind, because you are fearful of negative consequences or results. Put in place a strategy that you would execute if that consequence took place – you will soon realise that there is nothing to be fearful of!
– Make the necessary sacrifices: Forget what the organisation thinks it should do, to become more innovative. It must DO what It MUST in order to succeed. Learning from those choices is the key.
– Be willing to learn the lessons you don’t want to be taught: A business that wants to be more intrapreneurial, must be willing to learn harsh truths about itself, and seek to learn and integrate the results.
We all have to be entrepreneurial just to survive in life..
But isn’t that what business is about?