Join Robbie Kellman Baxter for an in-depth discussion in this video Understanding what success looks like as an intrapreneur, part of Become an Entrepreneur Inside a Company.
- Anytime you invest, you should know what your objectives are before you start. Your innovation objectives could result in benefits for your organization, your team, or you personally, regardless of whether or not your innovation is adopted. Start with personal benefits. If you're doing something that isn't in your best interest in either the short or the long-term, you're probably not going to be very motivated. Think broadly. If your initiative is successful, it could lead to new opportunities, maybe to lead your new idea as it scales.
Or maybe you will be given additional resources and flexibility to develop other ideas. In any case, your work can contribute to your personal brand as an innovator and self-starter, whether you stay in your organization or go on to start your own business. You're going to learn a lot by diving into something new as well. Skills and subject matter expertise are the byproducts of entrepreneurship. Finally, it's just really engaging and inspiring to be working on something big and bold.
We spend so much time at work. We might as well have a good time, right? But of course, you need to be sure that your goals align with those of your organization. Otherwise, it's unethical to take a paycheck. Success should result in a proven, scalable way to improve the organization's condition. The most common ways to measure success are either identifying and tapping into new sources of revenue, dramatically reducing costs or building sustainable competitive advantages.
You should know what your metrics will be and how your boss and your company will evaluate success. If you nail it, is that a huge win that will double your company's revenue or triple the bottom line? Or is it a modest improvement? Is it big enough to be a win for your manager as well as for you? Sometimes something that seems really bold to you is just a blip on the balance sheet for your shareholders and executive team. If you're gonna disrupt, you might as well think big. Modest tinkering for continuous improvement is great, but that's not entrepreneurship.
Even if your idea doesn't prove out, that's okay. It can still be a successful experiment. Many organizations have the same debates over and over again about entering new markets, rethinking strategic processes, or betting on emerging technologies to better serve customers. If you can come up with a way to test one of these hypotheses and end the debate, you're saving the organization time and worry and allowing leadership to focus on other ideas. Crossing things off the list can be as valuable as proving a new market sometimes.
By defining success in advance and thinking broadly about goals, you will set the right expectations across your organization and increase your likelihood of achieving your goals.
- Finding your idea
- Creating an MVP
- Gaining support from leaders
- Pivoting vs. staying the course
- Intrapreneurship case studies