Browsing Posts tagged Small Business Innovation

Have you considered writing a book to help expand your business?  I have lots of innovative ideas to grow my own business and provide valuable information to assist business leaders.  One of my objectives for the coming year is to publish several books related to innovation for small- and medium-sized businesses.  I have already outlined one book that I expect to publish within the next two months.  And, I have scheduled more books to write in the coming year.

 

Have you considered writing a book to expand your own business?  Here are some reasons to consider publishing a book:

  1. A book positions your business as a leader in its market or industry.
  2. A book establishes you as an expert in your field and a credible business leader.
  3. A book is the ultimate business card.

In the past, publishing a book has been time-consuming and expensive.  However, with today’s electronic publishing systems, publishing a book can be quick and inexpensive.  The Kindle platform has a huge following and provides a great mechanism for publishing books.

My first book is for business leaders who want to learn techniques for applying innovation to grow their business.  I was able to outline the entire book in a weekend, and now I’m writing the content for the various sections of the book.

Watch for my book in the near future!  Please leave a comment below and tell me about your book plans for the coming year.

There’s a common misconception that innovation is just for large companies.  However, identifying and developing creative ideas can benefit companies of all sizes – including small businesses that are just getting started.  Don’t wait until your business grows to a particular size to begin developing an innovation strategy – you may miss some great opportunities.

You don’t need a Research & Development Department or an Engineering Staff to take advantage of creative thinking in your business.  In fact, many small businesses can bring creative ideas to market faster than large corporations because of their smaller size.  Take advantage of the flexibility available to small companies and start the innovation process today.

Here’s all you need to start leveraging innovative ideas:

  1. At least one person willing to spend some time doing “creative thinking”.
  2. At least one “seed” idea.  This “seed” can be a problem or unmet need in your industry or in your own business.  Creative thinking exercises can start with seed ideas to develop potential solutions to these problems or unmet needs.
  3. A way to record the creative ideas (paper/pencil, computer, audio recorder or a white board) – even a napkin and a crayon works (I’ve done this myself several times in restaurants).  If you use a white board, be sure to take a picture of the board before it’s erased or record the ideas using paper or a computer.
  4. A system to evaluate creative ideas.  I have found that a small group of 4-6 people works well for evaluating creative ideas and refining those ideas into products or services that can be implemented in a business.

This is all you need to get started.  You can add more steps and activities as your innovation strategy develops – but keep things simple in the beginning.

Writing 30 blog posts in 30 days is not as difficult as I originally thought.  Each time I wrote a blog post, I came up with at least two additional ideas for future blog posts, articles and other content.  So, I now have a long list of topics to write about!

Also, most of my 30 blog posts are finding their way into my upcoming course on developing innovation strategies to grow a business.  Writing these 30 posts kept me thinking about that course every day and I worked on its content several times each week.  I have been slowly “working” on this course for several months.  As a result of the 30 day blogging challenge,  I will be ready to launch the course in the next week or two.

Am I finished blogging now that the 30 days are over? Absolutely Not!  Now that I know how easy it is to prepare blog posts, I will be posting on a regular basis.  Probably not every day, but at least several times every week.

Unexpected Benefits:  I met some great people during this 30 day challenge – other entrepreneurs and business leaders who are passionate about their business.   I was interviewed by a fantastic person, Terrie Wurzbacher.  Thanks to her interview, I am going to start scheduling my own teleseminars on various innovation topics of interest to business leaders and entrepreneurs.

Thanks to Connie Green for offering this challenge and supporting all participants in boosting their online presence.

Please continue visiting my blog – I have plenty of new content on the way!

I regularly use case studies to teach my clients about innovation.  Case studies show a particular example of a business innovation, but can be generalized to apply to many businesses in a variety of markets.  The following case study describes an innovation developed at one of my clients.

A law firm regularly filed documents with a government agency by first class mail.  Each mailing would include a postcard addressed to the law firm that was date-stamped by the government agency and returned to the law firm.  The postcard acted as a receipt that the documents were received by the agency.

The law firm had an internal procedure that required each postcard to be stored in a physical file containing the documents mailed to the government agency.  These physical files were also used regularly by attorneys and support staff in the law firm.  Administrative employees spent a significant amount of continue reading…

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