“Intrapreneurship” helps companies WIN BIG!


What is intrapreneurship?

Intrapreneurship is being an entrepreneur INSIDE a company. It’s when an employee starts with an idea and turns it into a product or service within the company. Of course, the company culture must support this in order for it to happen.

Often companies with a large employee population made up of millennials, (employees in their 20s) like DreamWorks, Facebook, LinkedIN and others, have intrapreneurship programs in place to support employees to develop ideas and pitch them to senior executives.

Intrapreneurship opportunities at work can keep the millennial generation engaged and help companies WIN BIG when a new product or service is launched.

For example, the “like” button we use on Facebook was apparently developed as a result of “intrapreneurship” opportunities at Facebook according to a Forbes article linked below.

According to the article, 40% of millenials are very interested in opportunities to be intrapreneurs and millenials will comprise 36% of the workforce in 2014 and 46% by 2020.

So, when you think “how can I keep my employees engaged?” this is one answer to that question. Provide an intrapreneurship program where employees have creative support to develop ideas and pitch them to senior executives.

Some of the companies and nonprofits I work with have formal or informal intrapreneurship programs and opportunities that have led to significant innovations in the form of programs and services offered. Several of these are nonprofit organizations.

It is exciting to me that when I have used the Appreciative Inquiry  approach for coaching a leader, a leadership team or for facilitating an organizational development process, that has led to specific intrapreneurial initiatives from within the organization. Individual team members have suggested ideas, developed them with leaders and colleagues and been given the go ahead by top leaders to implement the ideas.

This likely occurred because Appreciative Inquiry creates an open environment across traditional “silos” for sharing and developing ideas. This powerful approach motivates individuals and teams to achieve extraordinary results.

This blog is a conversation. You are part of it. I invite you to join me as we explore how to generate increased productivity and fulfillment for your entire circle of influence. Your input will be invaluable as we deepen our understanding and generate new practices.

We are collecting intrapreneurship stories and best practices. Please post yours below.

If you’d like to create or expand an intrapreneurship program in your company, call 805-965-8595 or email me for a free consultation.

Read the Forbes article here.