How to Pitch to Your Boss: International Business Times Publishes Entrepreneurship Article by Professor Priya Kannan-Narasimhan

Wednesday, March 27, 2019TOPICS: ResearchInnovation and Entrepreneurship

USD Professor of Management Rangapriya Kannan-Narasimhan sitting outside
begin quoteThis doesn’t mean that corporate entrepreneurs shouldn’t try to innovate; they just need to innovate differently.

Written By: USD School of Business Associate Professor of Management Priya Kannan-Narasimhan

If you’ve ever watched an episode of Shark Tank, you might come away with the impression that decision-makers in the business world are eager to invest in innovative, marketable ideas. It is indeed possible for promising concepts to germinate into successful startups relatively quickly, especially in the current investment climate. But if you work for a big company, you may have a hard time getting an innovative idea past your boss, let alone Mark Cuban.

Inspired by the success of the lean startup model, corporate entrepreneurs who work for large organizations are becoming more focused on creating innovative new products and services. However, established companies are not always willing to take chances on new innovations, especially those that do not clearly fit into the organization’s core strategic priorities. This reluctance is often frustrating for the entrepreneurial types whose creations never see the light of day.

This doesn’t mean that corporate entrepreneurs shouldn’t try to innovate; they just need to innovate differently. By focusing solely on product-market fit, these creative thinkers often fail to account for important distinctions between startups and corporations that merit different approaches to pitching new ideas.

Successful startups make innovation a top priority. They use methods such as rapid prototyping and market validation to carve out new niches and disrupt existing ones, often in a very short amount of time. Larger corporations can (and should) embrace these same principles. However, to sell managers on the value of their ideas, corporate entrepreneurs must ...

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