Get your business buzzing
04/11/2011 - To sustain and develop your business, you need to be something of an entrepreneur, Brett Clark, one of the judges of Greentree GAME ON says.
Start thinking like one of your customers, and you’re on your way.
The holy grail of business is developing a "sustainable competitive advantage".
As technology evolves at speeds that can make today’s best idea redundant next week, business must find ways to not only be at the top of their game, but stay there. One way business can achieve this is by embedding innovation into the fabric of their organisation.
However, innovation can sometimes be blurred in some minds with the term ‘invention’.
Viewing innovation as not only a new product or service, but also as a new process, system or "way of doing things" can deliver not only substantial returns on investment, but also when done efficiently and effectively on a continual basis, potentially a sustainable competitive advantage.
The mantra that many organisations use to achieve these objectives is to become the "constructor of connections". By apply this philosophy to everything your organisation does such as business development, technology and even human resources, it will provide you with an outward looking perspective of finding new ways of doing business.
In a paper entitled ‘The Entrepreneur as a Constructor of Connections’, Peter Earl, Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Queensland, wrote: "If entrepreneurs are to survive in business, they will need to possess some understanding of the thought systems employed by end users of the products with which they are involved. Consumers typically have lives that ‘revolve around’ linked sets of activities and products that comprise their ‘lifestyle’. Knowing what will appeal to particular consumers thus requires an appreciation of the contexts in which choices are being made, which are themselves a reflection of the thought systems that consumers use."
At our organisation, ePharmacy, the simple use of restaurant buzzers in large retail pharmacies allowed increase in average sales, plus enhanced customer experience by allowing less stressful waiting times for prescriptions. The innovation was identified by a staff member who "constructed a connection" between a proprietary technology and an existing process to deliver an enhanced customer outcome and return on investment.
As they say, you do not need to re-invent the wheel; you just need to find a way of making it move faster and easier.
About Brett Clark
Having moved from running a chemist’s shop to being a managing partner of an online retail group with a billion-dollar turnover, Brett is the personification of the entrepreneurial spirit. He tries to encourage bright young people on the verge of entering the workforce to follow their dreams.
Brett is one of the judges for Australia's biggest online competition, Greentree GAME ON.