Keeping your business ahead of the innovation curve

Businesses from micro right through to large enterprises are constantly faced with new challenges (and opportunities) to remain relevant. But, as a business owner, that might leave you feeling like you’re sometimes forced to make reactionary changes to suit the demands of the ever-evolving marketplace.

Twenty years ago business technology centered on floppy disks, fax machines and Windows 95. Now, there’s an abundance of tech gadgets including smart phones, cloud technology, tablets and social networks. The business world has changed significantly in the last 20 years or so and it will continue to change at an increasingly rapid pace, so now is the perfect time to ensure your business is ready for the journey ahead.

Business owners and entrepreneurs need to take advantage of innovations in technology or they run the risk of being left behind. “But wait! Slow down,” you say? The pace of change may be exciting to some, but for many of us it can be quite daunting and often stressful to keep up with. So, how can you ensure you’re running a productive business?

Here are our top three tips to help you keep your business evolving and ahead of the curve.

1. Don’t fight it – go with it. The only thing constant in business is change, so you might want to stay in the know. Try scanning your environment for trends and educate yourself and your employees on any factors that could potentially impact your business. Changes can stem from factors such as the economy, politics, society, changing cultural trends, technological advancements or variations to the environment. Keeping track of potential threats and opportunities in these areas can help keep your business ahead of the game.

shareasimage (5)Whilst scanning your environment, it’s also important to remain vigilant on your competitors. According to Tim Reed, CEO of MYOB, keeping up with the competition is all about innovation, not price. So, how do you compete on innovation? It’s about keeping your customer’s needs in mind and the new challenges they’re facing. Listening to your customers is a great way to gain insight and build new ideas (just like MYOB do via their customer Ideas Centre). 

2. Don’t be afraid to partner with other businesses. Teaming up with other businesses and expanding ideas beyond your four walls is critical to innovation. That’s why Shoeboxed Australia’s partnership with MYOB has been so important. Integrations (tech & otherwise) can allow your customers to enjoy a more seamless and productive experience of working with you. Have you considered other businesses you could potentially partner with to maximise everything your business has to offer?

3. Amongst all the change, some things should remain constant. As your industry continues to change, it’s important to make sure your vision and mission are at the very core of your business. This helps to ensure you don’t stray from your goal as your business evolves. While innovation is crucial to survival, try not to bombard your clients with a constant stream of new features. Instead, communicate with your customers and educate them on how they can use new features to their advantage. Balance is key! Also key here is that you focus on communicating the benefits of those features, not the features themselves.

Above all, having a team that can work together productively and effectively is one of the best ways to build a working environment. You might also like to have a read of a blog on managing your team with communication, consistency and collaboration.

If you’d like to know more about cloud technology or integrating your MYOB accounting package with your Shoeboxed Australia account, you can give us a call on 1300 00 1333 (AU) or 0508 00 1333 (NZ) or drop us a note.

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