The term continuous improvement is an oxymoron. That is, there is only so much “continuous” that can be improved upon. Businesses that attempt to improve performance find there is a limit to what can be accomplished using internal knowledge and expertise. Try as they may, the laws of atrophy eventually set in and eventually result in what I call the Performance Plateau.
High performing companies like Proctor and Gamble understand the value of integrating ideas from outside the organization to drive new concepts, ideas and products. They are employing external collaboration to drive innovation.
The diagram below demonstrates the typical performance curve of high performing businesses in which external collaboration is integrated.
So if you are trying to find new ideas to progress your business to the next level, then integrate external collaboration through the following steps:
1. Identify key suppliers, contractors and consultants who can bring new ideas into the business.
2. Create a forum to discuss challenges and opportunities openly with these resources. Capture ideas for consideration relative to the existing business strategy.
3. Attain the support of key external stakeholders in designing and implementing new ideas to bring to market quickly and effectively.
4. Share rewards and accolades with supporting stakeholders to drive further engagement and support of collaborative efforts.
For a copy of our recent white paper on Building Collaboration, contact us at email@example.com with the title “Collaboration White Paper.”
© Shawn Casemore 2013. All rights reserved.