Humanity is facing new, enormous pressures that threaten our ability to create a thriving global economy. Two mega challenges in particular -- extreme weather (driven by climate change) and intense pressure on resources -- are raising the cost of “business as usual” and forcing deep changes or what I’m calling a “big pivot” in how we operate. The stakes are high and multitrillion dollar markets in buildings, transportation, energy, water, consumer products and finance are all in play.
Issues of this scale might seem to apply only to the largest organizations and economies. But smaller, entrepreneurial companies have a critical role to play. The mega challenges pose constraints on a system, and constraints drive innovation. New thinking can -- and most often does -- come from the ranks of entrepreneurs.
Here are three quick ideas for how entrepreneurs can bring their innovation to bear and tap into growing markets for big solutions.
Customers may not be singing the lyrics but they ask this question every time they do business with a company. And companies need to be asking the same question of their customers. Will they stay or will they go?
Measure Customer Delight, Not Satisfaction
Loyal customers are the foundation of profitable growth. Without them, companies are left to focus their time, money and other resources on fishing for new customers. But how do you know if your customers will stay? You can always ask them, but it’s unlikely you will get an honest response—at least one that is believable enough to use for forecasting revenue.
WOBI contributing editor Forrest Jones caught up with Trish Gorman before WOBI on Innovation for a quick Q&A session prior to her presentation at the forum on June 4-5.
1. --Disruption requires not just desire, but specific configurations of traits, behaviors and attitudes. What are those traits and how does a company instill them?
Though no single configuration of traits defines a disruptor, disruptor individuals do frequently have certain clusters of traits. Curiosity and passion, for example, are two common ones—even though not all curious and passionate people are disruptors. A company can promote the combinations of traits and behaviors it desires through a combination of modelling desired attitudes, hiring for certain traits, and creating incentives for expressing disruptive behaviors in productive ways.