Agility and Innovation are the two strategic advantages of Small Businesses

Agility Many leaders of small firms focus on making their business work efficiently and on delivering high-quality customer service. There is absolutely nothing wrong with these objectives. They are both essential aims. However, if they lead to rigidity and the exclusion of variation then they can undermine the key advantage that small businesses have over large businesses – agility. If you run... Read More--

Fail Often, Fail Cheap and Speed up your Innovation Approval Process

Draw a flow chart diagram of your organisation’s approval process for innovations. Pick an example for a theoretical new idea. Suppose it is a good idea to improve customers’ satisfaction that would involve significant spending and the co-operation of several departments. What levels of approval and authority would it need to see the light of day? Who are the key stakeholders in the approval... Read More--

How often should you roll the dice?

Let’s play a game. It costs you $1 to play. We then roll a dice once. If it comes up 6, I pay you $10 otherwise you lose. Do you want to play? Most likely you will agree to play. You have a one in six chance of winning $10 for a $1 bet. Now let’s make it $1 million to play. Once again we roll the dice just once. If it comes up 6, I pay you $10 million. Do you want to play? The probabilities are... Read More--

How to Organise a Corporate Advisory Board

I have facilitated Corporate Advisory Board (CAB) meetings for several clients. A CAB is a council of very senior representatives from a small number of key clients. The board meeting is a confidential sounding board where future plans and directions can be discussed. The CAB can be a powerful source of feedback, dialogue and ideas. However there are some pitfalls to avoid and things to plan carefully... Read More--

Set Out your Declaration of Innovation

Many CEOs and leaders talk about the importance of innovation in their organisations.   But often their words are bland and vague – just a form of management-speak.  If you want people to really believe then why not explain exactly what you mean with a Declaration of Innovation.  The Declaration of Innovation is a statement of commitment and intent.  It should contain the following elements: a)... Read More--