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How to Step Up

Do you want your team to STEP Up? To start thinking for themselves, to innovate, to be more entrepreneurial?

Many organisations are identifying the need to be more agile, to think entrepreneurially, to encourage innovation. It’s important stuff. The world is changing around us, and fast. The pace of technological, social, environmental and political change has ramped up and many organisations are struggling to keep up.

It is a good strategy. ‘Let’s become more entrepreneurial in our way of thinking, and encourage everyone to work on their own initiative.’ But it can feel like a lonely path when you are walking it.

So how do you do this? What have we learned from delivering these programmes across the North West? How do you change a culture of behaviours and thinking to help it become more agile? How do you be entrepreneurial without risking the safety of the existing business systems and processes?

Being entrepreneurial is risky, many entrepreneurs fail. How do you get your team to Step Up to the challenges you are facing and risk failure?

We have worked with many different businesses, large and small on developing entrepreneurial thinking and innovation within the actual culture that exists in that organisation. Not the one you wish you had, but the one you actually have. And we have identified four core steps to enabling your team to Step Up.

  1. Work with those that get it first. You know the ones; they have initiative and are willing to challenge the system, but not always in the right direction. If you encourage and engage them, help them prioritise where to challenge so that it fits with the vision of the future and allow them to try some ideas, you’ll start things moving and drive some successes.
  2. Give them the information they need. Often in big organisations, people feel like they are ten-pin-bowling with a curtain half way down the bowling lane. They bowl without being able to see what they are aiming at, and the feedback is ‘left a bit, right a bit’ from the management who don’t let them see the results of their actions. Let them know what they are aiming for and have access to relevant results.
  3. Give them the skills to assess their ideas. Understanding the commercial and strategic drivers and results of their ideas is one thing, but how to prioritise, how to help their ideas have traction, how to help others in their team come up with ideas and run with them. These are all skills that can be learned.
  4. Support them through failures and successes. If you are going to Step Up to a challenge and make yourself vulnerable to failure / derision, you want to know that the organisation has your back. Of course there are parameters to work within and non-negotiable limits to failures, but you need your new breed of intrapreneurs to take a few risks; you have to test out new ideas – entrepreneurial thinking can be stymied by planning…

‘Failure is an option. If you are not failing, you are not innovating enough.’ Elon Musk.

Don’t forget to rinse and repeat… Changing behaviours and cultures is not a fast process.

We know this stuff because we do this regularly. We are supporting people with the ‘how’ on a daily basis. Our STEP Up  (Start Thinking Entrepreneurially Programme) is specifically designed to support your organisation to develop agility, innovation and entrepreneurship in a way that works with your existing culture, so powerful changes are sustainable and realistic. Oh and it’s fun, experiential and engaging too.

Are you taking your organisation on a journey? If you like the steps above but are not sure how to implement them, call us for how the STEP Up programme can deliver tangible business returns for your business. After all, we are entrepreneurs. We like to know the results of what we do… 🙂

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