After spending several years at Intel, Lila Ibrahim joined Coursera, a provider of MOOCs, (massive open online courses, free online lessons which have been hugely successful over the past few years).In an article in Fortune, Ibrahim gives some advice on how to boost innovation within large corporations.
1. BE DIFFERENT
Innovation is about being fearless! Employees in large enterprises shouldn’t be afraid of making bold choices and trying new experiences. It’s a great way to surpass yourself and take on new challenges by working with people with different skillsets in an open innovation rationale.
2. BECOME YOUR OWN CEO
“There are so many resources out there, as well as mentors and peers from whom to learn and gain perspective”, says Ibrahim. Given the limited resources of a startup, you have to wear different hats, even in areas you’re not an expert in. A CEO needs to encourage this entrepreneurial spirit among employees so they can constantly expand their skillset and thus develop innovation.
3. OWN WHAT YOU ARE
Another essential factor for stimulating innovation in organisations is embracing entrepreneurship. Ibrahim explains:
“Adopting the “intrapraneur” label at Intel gave me (and my team) an entirely new vocabulary. Suddenly we were able to explain what we were doing within a “start-up” framework that other people could better understand—a process that helped remove obstacles to new ways of doing business. As intrapreneurs, we took pride in being rebels, rolled up our sleeves, and got the job done.
You don’t need to be at a startup to innovate and have a huge impact. Often, all you need is creativity and the willingness to learn skills outside of your comfort zone to innovate right where you already are.”
Because “Digital for All, Now” is a state of mind!