An entrepreneur can adopt a strategic management style that helps nurture an entrepreneurial mindset in her entire team. To foster a culture of entrepreneurial creativity and innovation, guide your employees to start thinking like intra-preneurs–people who bring an entrepreneur’s disruptive perspective and mission-driven thinking to their work within a larger organization. Here are three ways to make this happen at your company:
- Gather feedback constantly.
Asking for frequent input from your team spurs everyone to be more engaged about daily operations and projects that affect the company. When people know that their opinions will be sought and valued, they start to habitually search for growth opportunities and to be proactive about offering innovative solutions. You might have a view from the top, but the best ideas often come from those on the ground floor who have a hands-on understanding.
- Support a culture of “what if?”
Successful entrepreneurs are both dreamers and doers. Encourage employees to not just dream, but to take their ideas and goals for their work and find ways to implement the vision. At my wealth management firm LexION Capital, all team members submit quarterly goals. One of those goals is always a “dream goal,” which can be anything that they’d love to see happen for the firm. Some of those dream goals may seem like shooting for the stars, but what successful entrepreneur doesn’t aim high? When someone submits a great idea, they can also earn the right to run with it and put it into practice.
- Teach your team to focus on strategic growth.
When you invite your team to set visionary goals, you also have to teach people how to think scale as far as implementing them. This is the second part of the dreamer-doer mantle, and it’s critical to turning entrepreneurial creativity into company-wide success. Use these two questions to evaluate ideas: First, how does this idea fit with our vision as a company? Second, how can we grow this sustainably? There is a difference between strategic, long-term growth and expansion alone.