Companies integrate more and more the expressions of the “start-up” world: in the wake of crowdfunding, crowdsourcing and open innovation. How can you find yourself in this lexicon that keeps evolving?
After money, ideas
One thing is certain, in all these terms we find a common point: the participation of the crowd, whatever their form is: financial, intellectual, material or even temporal participation…
Crowdfunding has undoubtedly been the trigger for this phenomenon. The development of these new alternative economies, in the form of grants, loans or even equity, has seen a meteoric rise, as evidenced by general platforms such as Ullule, Kisskissbankbank or vertical platforms, specialized in specific thematic.
But money is no longer enough. Behind this financial solicitation of the crowd quickly developed the will to access something more “intellectual” and perhaps also more engaging. This is how “open innovation” was developed by the companies themselves and not by start-ups. In short, open innovation allows companies to find new ideas, thanks to the “crowd” which has plenty of ideas, and more particularly thanks to the start-ups.
Open innovation sometimes goes further: now some B to C companies are directly soliciting customers. Companies such as Starbucks, Poivre Rouge and RATP in France are launching calls for ideas via dedicated platforms in order to improve their services.
Decompartmentalise the search for ideas
So why not apply external solutions to internal issues? Ideas have always existed in large companies, as we know. Whatever the industrial field, each plant has one day put in place a small urn somewhere in a corner to collect the best ideas of the employees and thus try to improve the industrial processes. A method that has undoubtedly proved itself but which has never been very collaborative and which, especially, has rarely crossed the walls of the factory…
The arrival of new generation ideas boxes, via dedicated Internet platforms, has changed the situation. Now the search for ideas is no longer reserved solely for factories, it takes on a new dimension and thus makes its entry into the entire company. All employees can now be solicited, in all fields and in all functions. Objective: continuous improvement, not “top down” or “bottom up” but truly collaborative.
For companies, internal crowdsourcing is thus a huge reservoir of ideas, even innovations, multidisciplinary, multi-site and international. It creates a true “start-ups” spirit within companies by federating cross-functional teams around the common search for new ideas.
Internal crowdsourcing is, finally, a real motivation for employees: sharing ideas, carrying innovative projects (and seeing them highlighted by management), all these are drivers of cross-function, recognition and mobilization.
A step towards intrapreneurship?