3 Ways Entrepreneurs Stifle the Innovative Capability of their Businesses

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3 Ways Entrepreneurs Stifle the Innovative Capability of their Businesses Image Credit: inc.com

Innovation is the foundation of entrepreneurial success and the gateway to unique product development. An entrepreneur can only go as far as he or she can

innovate and creatively solve problems. Just like the wheels of an automobile that only moves towards the direction that it is steered, innovation in any business goes to any direction decided by the entrepreneur.

Driving innovation goes beyond the talk, it involves developing capabilities that will help your company to identify and fill market gaps with new values. Businesses attract profitable loyal customers by constantly developing their innovative capability to offer values. The ability of any venture to innovate lies in its innovative capability. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs focus so much on creating new products that they neglect developing their innovative capabilities. The capability to innovate is considered the most important factor for business growth, and businesses that have it can integrate other resources to successfully stimulate innovation.

Companies that are successful at innovating have developed capabilities to sustain the level of innovation as well as maintain market leadership. However, sometimes, there are few activities of entrepreneurs that can put clogs in the ability of their companies to innovate. They are:

Taking the initiative to solve customer problem alone
Every business has a culture that drives its practices. The prevailing organization culture an entrepreneur allows in his or her business can either strengthen innovative capabilities or weaken it. An organization where every business decision is initiated by the entrepreneur and passed down to others will hinder employees from developing their ability to create innovations. To sharpen the innovation capability within your organisation, decentralize decisions and empower employees to develop their abilities to create new ideas.

Poor Implementation plan
Generating new ideas can be the easiest task any business outfit can embark. Some even go to the extent of developing such ideas into a better product or process, however the journey usually ends at the point implementation is meant to start. Many great plans are filed out because the entrepreneur doesn’t have the commitment or willingness to implement them.

Innovative capability deals with constant transformation of knowledge and ideas into new products, but if you are not implementing the plans, you bring the ability of your business to innovate to a standstill.

When they have lost their sense of curiosity
Curiosity is what gives entrepreneurs insights into creative ways of solving problems, and that is what helps businesses to expand into new areas. However, when an entrepreneur begins to operate on assumptions of ‘I already know’, his ability to be curious weakens, and so does his ability to proffer solutions to new problems. In fact, he loses sight of when a new problem surfaces in the market. Innovative capability helps businesses to produce new products, and they can’t achieve that without questioning every detail in their operations.

Innovation capability helps businesses combine resources to meet new market challenges, and respond to unexpected change within the market. However to make it work, entrepreneurs must be willing to decentralize decision making, question details of their every operation and develop a proper implementation plan for every new ideas.

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Ofunre Iriobe

Ofunre Iriobe is a researcher, and facilitator at the Redeemer's University Entrepreneurship Development Centre. He is also a private consultant to young aspiring entrepreneurs.

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