Innovation: Asking Questions To Get Started

Mon, Apr 24, 2006

Business Innovation


That’s a word that seems to be front and center in the business world these days.

But, these days, who really needs to contemplate how their organizations tackle the innovation issue? Is it just the “big boys like Dell, Nokia, Philips, etc.? Or is your competitor in the next town over from you – the one you seem to always be fighting for your next piece of business – right now discovering some innovation shortcut that you haven’t even considered yet?

Obviously, every business has its own individual challenges and opportunities. But most successful businesses of any size do tend to have something in common: none of them settle for the status quo. As an inherent part of their ongoing business model, these successful businesses regularly review their processes and operations.

Important Questions To Ask

Smart, effective leaders of all business sizes – small, medium or big should constantly be asking themselves and their colleagues the following questions:

  • As an organization, are we being as effective as we possibly can be?
  • Are we realizing our full potential in the core competencies we offer our customers? (Oh, and by the way, what exactly ARE our core competencies)?
  • Are we losing ground to our competitors in any area, in terms of speed, quality or reliability issues?
  • What, if anything, is getting in the way of us growing to the next level?
  • As an organization, is networking with potential solution providers a part of our regular procedures? If not, how and where do we start?

Now, I’m far from naive (I hope!). Innovation can tend to be a vague, slightly illusory concept for many small and medium-size companies, many of whom spend most of their time just struggling to complete that next deadline.

But, sadly, for these same companies, ignoring the topic of innovation can unfortunately yield very real, and very negative, results.

So, if you haven’t yet, start asking yourself those questions

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