03 Aug Intrapreneurship: Innovation and Creativity in the company
The development of the logic of parity in big companies has allowed the development of intrapreneurship. It is then a question of leaving more opportunities to the various actors who wish to take an active part and contribute fully to the life of their companies. If at first glance this system seems to resemble entrepreneurship, it differs in several ways.
Who are the intrapreneurs ?
They are individuals who perceive the company as a source of continuous learning and who wish to be part of this creative process. Thus, intrapreneurs are employees who will plan and execute a complete project in parallel with their official day to day roles, with the full support and resources of the company. Intrapreneurship can take several forms ranging from a single employee to the formation of a project team representing complementary skill sets.
What are their roles ?
They look for new ideas and directions for their companies to pursue. Their creativity, their determination, their vision and their capacity to work outside the company bureaucracy makes them nimble allowing the company to rapidly gain perspectives and achieve goals that it might otherwise be unable to. For example, the post-it or the “Macintosh” were created by intrapreneurial initiatives.
Why would companies be interested?
This system adds real value for them because they have access to a pool of ideas within their own company. It is a question of seizing an opportunity, as much for the company as for the employees and to create a symbiotic relationship. By reducing hierarchical layers, the company energizes teams and by integrating intrapreneurship into their management strategy and making their employees responsible they create a relationship of trust. The offer brought by the intrapreneur complements that of the company and can only fit well since the intrapreneur is first and foremost an employee of the company.
However, highly standardized companies with a very traditional organizational structure may have difficulty adopting this system.
Can we talk about safe-entrepreneurship ?
The profile of an entrepreneur and an intrapreneur have points in common. Both are creative, have the will to innovate and implement a project. However, the intrapreneur will be in an environment more favorable to innovation if the organizational structure of his company supports his or her project. Moreover, in case of failure, he will have the chance for an easier and faster recovery.
Even if we often talk about entrepreneurship, intrapreneurship has really interesting prospects. However, the sharing of decision-making power and the limits that will be imposed on it are different from the “freedom of action” that entrepreneurs possess.
The one major point in common for both entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs is that they both want to innovate and to showcase their creativity.