Becoming an Innovative Entrepreneur
In the past decades the global economy changed abruptly with new industries that replaced the old businesses and industries. Moreover, there is still high potential for industry disruption as new technologies and business models emerge.
The recent examples include e-commerce that has already disrupted the traditional brick-and-mortar retail business model and electric/hybrid vehicles that are about to disrupt the global automotive industry and transportation sector.
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All the new business models developed in the past decades involved some sort of innovative entrepreneurship. It is important to note that innovation plays a critical role in the modern business.
To become competitive in the current environment, the entrepreneur must be innovative and adaptable to changes. Innovation became the crucial factor in successful entrepreneurship.
Therefore, it is reasonable to consider 10 tips on how to become an innovative entrepreneur.
How to become an innovative entrepreneur?
1. Welcome challenges
In business, it is often necessary to make rapid changes to stay competitive and thrive in a continuously changing environment.
Innovative entrepreneurship is closely related to risk-taking and any entrepreneur must take on new challenges without hesitation in order to be innovative.
Furthermore, it is important to do what seems impossible by most, to benefit from the advantages of being the first to enter a new field or create a new product.
Hence, taking on challenges without hesitation is the first tip to innovative entrepreneurship.
2. Learn from experience
It is important to learn from both personal experience and that of other businesses.
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Entrepreneurship always deals with risk and there are many mistakes that entrepreneurs make.
It is important to develop a habit of learning from past mistakes, as this will substantially improve the learning curve of the innovator.
Furthermore, learning from mistakes of other businesses helps increase your own chances of success.
In addition, innovative entrepreneurship is not a new concept. Therefore, the study of past successes and failures can reveal important components of successful innovative entrepreneurship.
3. Focus on the long-term vision
Innovative entrepreneurship is about vision and long-term perspective. Hence, it is critical to establish a long-term vision that is compatible with the future.
The innovative entrepreneur must see the future in a different way and be willing to commit to that vision. Finding a new way or a process to make things different is the first step to effective innovative entrepreneurship.
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Therefore, the established vision and the focus on differentiation are two critical elements of innovative entrepreneurship.
4. Study the product or the market
It is critical to the success of any venture to study the product you are planning to launch or the market characteristics such as competition, consumer tastes, patters and the production process.
Every successful innovator from the past studied their market and weaknesses of the existing product or service.
Therefore, it is beneficial to gather as much information as possible on existing production processes and future trends to develop an innovative business idea that will have a high chance of success.
5. Continuous improvement
The next tip to innovative entrepreneurship relates to continuous improvement. Each innovative entrepreneur of the past was focused on improvement.
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That is, it is a necessary component of innovative entrepreneurship to learn how to make things better and more efficient.
The focus on continuous improvement will allow for sustainable business growth and will help enhance competitiveness in the established market.
6. Idea recording and analysis
It is helpful to use notepads or any other recording device and start recording ideas and gathering feedback from customers, partners or even strangers.
Thomas Edison left many notes that were dedicated to his business ideas. Most of them were incomplete, but each note was a stepping stone toward success.
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Recording and analysing ideas will add some structure to the innovative process. This will contribute substantially to the success of the new venture. Therefore, record keeping is paramount to innovative entrepreneurship.
7. Understanding of the creative process
It is important to understand the creative process of innovation. Incubation, preparation, illumination and implementation are four steps of the process and the entrepreneur must understand and embrace each of the four steps before starting.
Having an understanding of the creative process will contribute to the development of an innovative entrepreneur.
8. Keeping an open mind
To become an innovative entrepreneur, it is important to have an open mind and to stay rational.
This will enable the entrepreneur to see the world differently which is a critical characteristic of successful disruption. The past experiences of two great innovators – Steve Jobs and Elon Musk confirm this.
The entrepreneurs saw the world from different perspectives and this allowed them to disrupt their industries.
9. Pattern or trend analysis
Innovative entrepreneurship is about the future. The innovators try to develop ideas that will change the existing process or the market to reap huge benefits in the future.
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Therefore, it is necessary to monitor and analyse industry patterns and trends in both consumer behaviour and preference.
Innovative entrepreneurs have the capacity to predict future changes and see the world in the future.
Therefore, development of pattern and trend analysis skills is the prerequisite of the innovative entrepreneurship.
10. Faith and persistence
To become an innovative entrepreneur, one must come through many obstacles and face the avalanche of failure and frustration.
Therefore, persistence and faith in your idea is critical to success as an innovative entrepreneur. Edison failed about 1,000 times before succeeding with his venture.
Steve Jobs lost his CEO position and managed to succeed with the company he founded.
Richard Branson and many other entrepreneurs failed many times but they became innovative disruptors because of their faith in success and persistence and commitment to the main goal.
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Laura Butler is co-owner at Outreach Lab, specialising in providing content writing and SEO services to businesses around the world. Having worked in multiple start-ups over the years, she has experience in building businesses from the ground up.
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