Have you ever had a brilliant new idea for your business? Did that idea ever go anywhere?
Unfortunately, particularly in larger companies, it can be hard to make sure great ideas are heard. As companies grow and expand, they turn to process-driven thinking and hierarchies that are designed to increase efficiency. And these strategies work wonders. However, they have the unforeseen consequence of stifling creativity and innovation in employees.
This is why startups and smaller companies have been able to disrupt so many traditional industries over the past few years. These companies operate outside the confines of traditional companies, and are able to capitalize on employee-led innovation.
Many major brands are starting to get wise to this trend and are trying to upend their traditional processes in hopes of creating some breakthrough innovation of their own. Companies like Google, Paypal, and most recently LinkedIn, have launched internal incubators, specialized programs designed to support new ideas and products, to allow employees to dream big and carry their companies forward.
These incubators are allowing some of the world’s largest companies to:
- Have an agile, startup-style mindset
- Generate fresh ideas that employees are passionate about
- Share ownership of a company’s products and direction with employees.
Incubators can be implemented at no cost in companies of any size and in any industry. Interested in starting one of your own? Here are three easy steps to get you started and how automation can help.
Organize Your Efforts
An internal drip campaign is the perfect way to organize the kickoff off your new incubator. Introductory information, idea pitching, and voting can all be handled through a drip campaign. Managing these emails through an automation solution can help keep responses organized. These emails can also be sent from your executive team showing that employee ideas will be valued and have real potential to become a reality.
Although financial compensation certainly is an option for incentivizing employees, it is not a requisite one. LinkedIn provides unique opportunities to learn and grow within the company to their employees by pairing them with an executive mentor during the development of their idea. Internal exposure and recognition within the company are also strong motivators for employees.
Give Them the Time
LinkedIn provides teams an entire quarter to develop their ideas. Google famously provides a day for employees to work on passion projects. While smaller companies don’t have the bandwidth to give up much time, allowing a few hours a week to dedicate to projects is enough for a motivated employee to generate results.
What do you think about the concept of an internal incubator? Let us know in the comments down below.