How to Build a Culture of Innovation in your Business

POSTED: April 13, 2016 BY: CATEGORY:

Change is happening faster than ever, thanks to evolving technology and the information age. With the pace of change expected to speed up in the future, it’s never been more important for businesses to stay on top of trends and innovate. If your business doesn’t keep up with the changes happening all around it, you run the risk of falling behind your competitors and becoming obsolete.

Business innovation is not just a one person job. If you are going to be successful at keeping up to date with new trends and moving your business forward, innovation needs to become part of your business culture from the ground up.

Whether you have five employees or 50, building an innovative, trend aware culture doesn’t have to be difficult, but you will need to get everyone on board and take proactive steps towards shaking off old ideas and welcoming the new.

Here are a few guidelines that can help you create a culture of innovation in your business.

Educate your team

The first step to encouraging your staff to be more aware of the latest trends and innovations is to teach them how to spot them. Tell them about the importance of trends and educate them on how trends work.

Encourage your employees to keep an eye out for new products and services that are innovative and that address the needs of customers in a new way. Once they have identified a trend or a particularly innovative approach to solving a problem, encourage them to think about how it could apply to your business.

Products and services that meet your customers’ needs in a new way could change their expectations of what your business can do for them. This means that keeping up to date with the latest trends is essential if you want to make sure you stay relevant in your customers’ eyes.

Create regular innovation-friendly business practices

It’s not enough just to talk about being more innovation friendly, if you want to really get the message across to your employees you will need to put your words into action when it comes to your business practices. This includes regularly updating your employees on any current trends that could affect you, and taking proactive steps to reward creative thinking and trend spotting among your staff members.

Innovation friendly business practices should look at processes and technology as well as your employees. Are overly laborious processes and systems holding your business back? Is your technology up to date and effective? Giving your employees the space and the tools to try new ideas is essential if you want to be a trend setting business.

Get outside your comfort zone

If you’re looking to get the creative juices flowing among your employees, getting out of the office and into a different environment for a while can make a huge difference. Many bigger brands have started implementing this idea with great success.

Whether you take your employees to a different venue, get them outdoors for some exercise or even have your meetings at the local coffee shop instead of the office once in a while, a new environment can spark different ways of thinking and allow your team to focus on the task at hand instead of getting stuck in familiar ways of thinking.

Whatever you choose to do, creating a culture of innovation among your employees can help your business stay at the forefront of trends and continue to meet your customers’ expectations as they evolve in the future.

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#Jo Macdermott - turning good businesses into great businesses is all in a day’s work for marketing consultant, Jo Macdermott. Jo leads Next Marketing, a multiple award winning business, which she has grown from scratch. Jo is commercial, empathetic and always has her eye on the end game.