Innovation does not come easy. As many companies have already discovered, innovation requires complete transformation of the current processes. Which in theory can be done easily.
There are many frameworks and tools available. In practice, the bigger the company, the more challenges change brings. Still, big companies in Singapore can innovate and set themselves apart from their competition. Here’s the top 5 tips from our experts at AB4 Systems:
1. Create an Innovation Strategy
It all starts with figuring out what kind of innovation is needed. And this is established in the strategy phase. Before moving to action, especially in the case of big companies in Singapore where every action costs, there needs to be a plan, a strategy. According to Gary Pisano in Creative Construction, there are four types of innovation: Routine, Disruptive, Architectural, and Radical. And they all need a specific system in place in order to work.
2. Embrace Design Thinking
If a company wants to apply design thinking, it is important to understand it first. The company that thrives on design thinking is IDEO and they offer the simplest definition. Design thinking is a human-centered approach to innovation that uses a designer’s expertise to integrate the needs of people and business with possible technologies. Design thinking doesn’t mean thinking about color and font, however. It refers to the mindset and the actual construction, to a range of ideas and methods to be applied.
Big companies in Singapore can use design thinking to create better processes and discover the actual issue that needs to be solved. This method, if applied correctly, has zero biases. Meaning it will help big companies in Singapore discover a real aching problem and create a solution that is guaranteed to bring results. This is how many startups become successful.
In fact, design thinking is a fundamental part of how we help our customers at AB4 Systems innovate. It’s our favorite tool for discovering a real issue to which we can develop a solution that fits best the needs of both the startup and its audience.
3. Build a culture
Innovation is not an action. It is a result. But it is also a culture. Innovation doesn’t happen overnight and there is no button to turn it on or off. Additionally, innovation comes from motivated and passionate teams. Hence the need for a culture. And this culture can be built by having clear values for each member to adhere to. Such values are tolerating failure, but not incompetence, being open to experimenting, but following a disciplined plan, having a collaborative environment, but individual accountability, empowering all employees, but having strong leadership. It can seem overwhelming and complicated for big companies in Singapore, but there are methods out there that can help and frameworks that can be used. And there are consultants who can be great assets throughout the innovation process. AB4 Systems can be your trusted partner in your innovation efforts.
4. Look to startups and learn from them
One thing startups do well is working agile. They do things fast and sometimes dirty. They test a lot and are able to easily find a good idea, easily implement processes and easily switch their focus or pivot. For big companies in Singapore, testing and implementing new processes can be daunting. Big teams adopt change with more difficulty. But creating business nuclei, like small startups within the big company, can have great results. Another good thing startups do is taking into account user feedback early on. Innovation requires total change. And big companies in Singapore looking to innovate and become more digital need not only replace existing processes, but rethink the business from scratch, with the end-user in mind. Taking a page from the book of startups, they can do this gradually instead of closing the business for a year while rebuilding. Our specialists at AB4 Systems can help you with this and guide you through the process.
5. Encourage intrapreneurship
Big companies in Singapore who want to launch disruptive products/services need to encourage internal startups. Intrapreneurs are employees who think like entrepreneurs. They take an idea and use the internal resources of the company to make it happen. Looking at employees like intrapreneurs can lead to having an internal incubator. Good ideas can be tried and tested in an agile way, wasting as little resources as possible. Moreover, if a company takes this approach, their teams can work on more ideas simultaneously. This leads to a greater chance of success.
AB4 Systems is trusted by many big companies all around the world (like UNICEF, The World Bank, Ernst&Young, Carrefour) to help them innovate and lead the process. Together with teams inside the big companies we manage to successfully help with innovation, digital transformation using cutting edge technologies like machine learning, artificial intelligence, powerful data visualisation and data analytics.
If you are ready to bring in innovation in your company, let’s talk!