A question that many executives ask me; “Is corporate entrepreneurship just the latest management fad.” Fad or no fad the real question is why now!
Read 10 reasons why corporate entrepreneurship is needed now. Then let me know if you think corporate entrepreneurship (Intrapreneurship) is a management fad or here to stay.
1) Inadequate Growth: The current reality is that most organizations have spent the last decade investing in existing or mature products that are not providing adequate growth.
2) Failure Rate: The failure rate for new business initiatives remains high for new products and services, more than ninety percent for transformational efforts.
3) Lack of Capabilities: A majority of CEOs do not feel like they have the skills or capabilities inside their organization to achieve their growth agenda, they are probably right.
4) Few Role Models: Only four percent of executives in large organizations are entrepreneurs or entrepreneurial, most executives have achieved their success by managing the core business not building new ones. Read More
In most organizations growth through innovation is a top priority. So is talent. Yet, few organizations adequately look at the link between growth and talent. Even when research has shown that there is a strong correlation between entrepreneurial leadership and higher levels of innovation and growth.
Future leaders are often molded in the image of the existing leaders who run the core business. That’s a mistake.
The skills and capabilities that propelled most executives to the top of organizations in the past are not the ones required to build new growth businesses. These executives are often blinded by their own experience. They rely on proven approaches that worked well in the core business but may not in a new business. They make decisions based on reason and argument not creative thought. They trust data more than intuition. They prefer risk avoidance to taking risks.
Perhaps this is part of the reason that revenue growth and innovation growth in organizations has slowed. Organizations marginalize their innovation efforts by playing it safe with individuals who represent the past, not the future.
In the article, How to Innovate When You’re Not the Big Boss, John Beeson said “Given the unrelenting pace of change surrounding organizations in virtually every industry, companies are looking for executives who know how to innovate and introduce change, not simply caretakers who can manage the status quo.”
Often the types of individuals needed to lead innovation projects are not even considered for the position. These individuals represent a small minority of independent thinkers who don’t fit the corporate mold. They see the world differently and they think and act differently. They don’t let existing systems and processes get in their way. They find new and creative ways to get things done. They leverage whatever resources they have available to them.
There are no roadmaps or guidebooks for entrepreneurial leaders to follow. They must create a new path, new processes and new ways of working. They will encounter obstacles that the organization has not encountered before. They will have to make decisions without sufficient data. They will face seemingly impossible hurdles to move forward. They will have to deal with resistance to change.
Innovation has become a critical imperative for many organizations and a survival strategy for others. The difference between success and failure may rest with the leaders you choose to lead these efforts.
Entrepreneurial leaders give your organization an innovation edge.
As organizations embrace corporate entrepreneurship they are beginning to understand the magnitude shift that is required to implement it successfully. At the same time they are beginning to look at corporate entrepreneurs and Intrapreneurs in a new light.
Many executives have a negative perception of Intrapreneurs. They can’t relate to them. Yet, many of the perceptions about Intrapreneurs are exactly the things that organizations need. These perceptions define who these individuals are. They are both negative and positive. It’s how you look at them.
These are just a few of the perceptions of internal entrepreneurs we’ve heard about: