Attempting to seize new opportunities and improve competitive positions, sustainable businesses are seeking out innovative solutions. In fact, research shows that innovation will be essential to both short-tem opportunistic value capture and longer-term business sustainability. The question then becomes: From where should these new ideas and innovative solutions originate?
“Most companies find it challenging to identify and assemble the right mix of skills needed for quick and accurate execution. Find people with capabilities for specific innovation tasks. Equip project leaders to take end-to-end ownership of the process.” –CEB Views
Our sustainability consulting has found that there are several ways to address this challenge. One approach is to look to the leading edge to see what others are doing. Another option is to capture ideas as they spring up as seeds of innovation from within the organization. It is upon this second path that we believe the ideal answer lies within stakeholder and social medial engagement strategies to develop collaborative relationships.
Exploring this further, we leverage the recent Harvard Business Review post, The Key Ingredients of a Successful Team. While this article focuses specifically on team dynamics, our sustainability finds guidance to create effective collaboration.
Innovative ideas do not have to come from one, single source. They can generate from within the company at the ground level. One key to success is to create a corporate culture that encourages and rewards innovation at all levels internal to the organization as well as external to the company.
An open innovation approach to business sustainability offers stakeholders the opportunity to become engaged in the future of a business. Recognizing that key stakeholders have a vested interest the success of the company, creates openness to new ideas that promote business success and innovative ideas.