Anyone who owns a small company or business wants to drive it forword. Well, many studies show that the absence of innovation in a company or organization leads to stagnation or, at worst, its decline. Innovation, in itself, refers to the transformation of a new idea into a product or service, in order to benefit both customers and companies. There are many ways in which a company can approachto innovation and apply it to achieve success: from developing new services or products, to creating a consistent brand image, developing marketing concepts perfectly adapted to the market, and improving production while maintaining its low cost.
You must follow a few basic principles and implement certain recurring processes in your company, which euqally involve employees, competitors and consumers. Thus, there are two sources you can refer to in the processes implementation: external and internal, both of equal importance, being essential one to each other.
External sources refer to activities that take place outside the organization, but the information that can be extracted from them helps a lot to develop the innovation process and build the strategy based on it. By external sources we refer to conferences, competition monitoring, different methods of rewarding employees:
· Attending various conferences, workshops and trainings - We are guided by examples, whether we want to admit it or not. Each of us has a certain reference point, which is often beneficial. The power of example is not a simple metaphor, but a fact. This is how many companies work. That is why many entrepreneurs often participate in conferences, debates or workshops that match their companies‘ needs. Through these events they extract all the information that could help them in developing their own business, creating a stronger, long-term business plan.
· Developing a habit in order to assess the competition’s activity and results - We are competitive, and when we win, we feel good and important. If your company seems like it is stalling, you can take into account the competition. This can make you realize what are your mistakes and what you should improve. At the same time, following the competition offers the advantage of always being one step ahead, of learning quickly from the mistakes of others.
· Adopting modern methods of rewarding employees - Apparently, the salary is no longer the only reason why employees choose to stay in a company and contribute to the innovative process. To keep employees motivated, many entrepreneurs choose other reward methods such as vouchers, digital meal vouchers or holiday packages.
In addition to external sources, we must also pay attention to what happens in the daily lives of employees. That is why it is very important for entrepreneurs to constantly organize activities dedicated to employees:
· Organizing in-house workshops - Workshops should be included in the budget of any employee-oriented company. Leadership, innovation and management programs are designed to give employees an overview of how the industry is evolving.
· Facilitating internal brainstorming sessions - In successful companies, the voice of employees is always heard. Therefore, organizing internal brainstorming sessions is beneficial for company’s evolution and for the employees. Through them new ideas are born or older ideas are improved.
· Market research - It is extremely important to know the competition and customers’ needs. The activities that consist in the analysis, collection and interpretation of market data have a major role in the innovative process in a company or organization.