Taking new initiatives in enterprises from the idea stage to the “booming business” stage is a long and difficult journey. There are countless factors involved in finding a way to success, ranging from politics to resource management. Be that as it may, one of the technics that too few executives use is the management of ideas. Whether you use a software connected with this concept or create your own workflow for it, idea management can help lay the stepping stones that can guide executives on the path to success. Here are such processes that can be used at every stage of business innovation, giving companies the edge on future challenges.
Testing Business Idea
For many entrepreneurs, coming up with an idea and envisioning the possibilities is the easy part. The next step—market research—is an entirely different story. Too often, budding managers will dive in with an idea that they are passionate about, failing to acknowledge the potential problems with their ideas. As Nancy A. Shenker, president of the Onswitch LLC, once said, “Entrepreneurs are often so passionate about their ideas, they can lose objectivity.”
The concepts of idea management can easily be applied at this stage, as it allows to test the waters of the market. Through surveys, prototypes, test groups, and idea management, executives can get a sense of how well a product or service will be received by consumers. While other market research is still important in this phase of business growth, neglecting to gather feedback from consumers is an error that could be costly down the line.
Improving Business Processes
Executives are likely to rely on a lot of manual processes for day-to-day operations. Many business founders find this to be manageable and more cost-effective when managing very small customer base. But as the customer base grows, such processes become unwieldy, and can end up cutting into productivity, and naturally into profits.
This is, once again, an area where idea management can come in handy. As the leaders of a growing business, chief executives are likely to not have a hand in every aspect of the day-to-day operations of the company. Neglecting to see every bottleneck and every inefficient manual process. But department leaders and mid-management do. Idea software includes a number of features that allow executives to gather feedback from employees, point out issues that they notice relating to performance, as well as offer innovative ideas improving business processes.
Employees are the greatest asset to a company, hence, should have an open channel of communication to present their ideas to executives or to their direct managers.
Developing New Products
We live in a fast-paced world, and consumer tastes can change in the blink of an eye. There is no business in existence that has continued to grow and thrive without making some changes to their products or services. Whether it’s adding new features to a product, cutting down on the time to provide a service, or using new technology to improve the way things are done, every business much change. It is staying on top of the exact changes that you consumers want to see that’s the real trick.
And it is idea management that can actually help perform that trick. Changes in consumer trends tend to trickle down from the consumers themselves to the businesses that provide the goods. If enterprises don’t have a wide-open line of communication with their consumers, they will be at the end of the grapevine, scrambling to keep up with competitors as they adapt to customers’ changing needs.
Idea management strategies and software help to track, analyze, and act on consumer trends early on, so that companies can stay ahead of the curve instead of falling behind it. Ultimately, the ability to predict and run with these changes is what will lead business towards soaring success.