Startup companies are known for their tenacity, ingenuity, innovation, and desire to improve every day. Most wouldn’t use these descriptors when describing well-established, more traditional organizations. Established organizations have great characteristics that help them succeed in the marketplace, but most aren’t seen as innovative or collaborative. In order to promote a culture of innovation and insight, how can organizations adopt a startup mentality among employees?
Bâton Global has experience in establishing systems that embrace collaboration and innovation and
have resulted in fundamental changes within organizations.
This transition is a difficult one for most organizations, as it takes discipline and a change in thinking by all members of the organization. What are the first steps in developing a startup mentality in established organizations?
Innovation means different things to different people. When an organization defines innovation, it helps employees understand what exactly is expected when they are asked to be more innovative. Although organizations would rather see innovation that creates major positive change in the organization such as new initiatives and technologies (radical innovation), most employees are able to support further innovation through incremental changes in processes and day-to-day duties.
Most established organizations are considered conservative and risk-averse. When strategies are typically conservative in the past, employees aren’t keen to provide ideas that could change the current course of the organization. In startups, mistakes are made everyday as employees are encouraged to set their own course of action and question the status quo. Allowing room for error creates an environment that is conducive to innovation.
Organizations that encourage questions and provide opportunities to express opinions can help promote risk taking and creativity. Organizations that develop a platform that encourages two-way communication among employees and upper-level decision-makers provide employees with the opportunity to present ideas that are insightful and adventurous.
Employees in startups are able to develop and grow due to firsthand experiences in outlining strategy and future goals. Rarely do opportunities like this exist for all employees in established organizations due to the breadth and overall size of an organization.
Programs that incorporate leadership, critical thinking, managing change, and other topics provide opportunities for employees to learn and grow. Employee development programs are also great ways for employees to establish skills that foster innovation and collaboration in an organization, similar to collaboration that exists within startups.
Startups not only provide employees with the tools and go-ahead to collaborate and provide thoughtful insight, but they also act on employee innovation as well. If insights aren’t further discussed as a team or business unit, the efforts of employees can be wasted.
Bâton Global has found that developing systems where employees are able to provide insight into development of organization objectives lead to greater accountability. In acting on the insight provided by employees, trust and respect are built among members of the community.
Bâton Global’s clients have implemented and executed management systems that encourage insight and collaboration amongst all employees, similar to systems that exist in startups.