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SMBs In Midwest Focused On Innovation

Written by Ken Gaebler
Published: 9/14/2011

Businesses are looking to new ideas to boost growth, but a development process is key for innovation to be successful.

A recent survey from Plante Moran and NewNorth Center found that small and medium-sized businesses in the Midwest are looking to new products and services to increase their revenue growth. But many of the companies are lacking a formal development process to successfully commercialize these innovations.

Innovation Trend

Results from the survey showed that in order for a business to successfully launch new products and services, the executive team must embed the innovation into its corporate strategy and properly budget for the innovation. The research found 72 percent of respondents said the executive team is the primary driver for innovation within the business, and thus executives must nurture innovation from the start.

Once a new idea has been researched, it is vital that companies allocate the appropriate funds to support the entire innovation process. A clear budget must outline when and where funds will be distributed, creating a sense of accountability while enabling workers to take risks to develop and validate new ideas.

Kelly Spors, a former reporter for the Wall Street Journal, recently wrote a piece for Small Biz Trends that highlighted key mistakes companies make when pushing an innovative idea such as green initiatives to lower energy consumption and costs. According to Spors, small businesses must be conscious of their resources and not try to do everything at once. It is better to create a timeline of how and when to properly introduce the new idea into the business model.

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