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Innovation is one buzzword that never seems to outgrow its welcome. Perhaps this is because when true innovation is effectively cultivated, growth always follows.
This can be easily observed in the nonprofit world, where funders are changing their funding habits and processes to better accommodate forward thinkers. For example, organizations like the Drucker Institute, established by famous innovation consultant Peter Drucker, dispense $100,000 annual awards to organization who bring about change “that creates a new dimension of performance.”
One effect of this elevated value of innovation is the spread of start-up culture into non-profits. Rather than traditional practical but dry paperwork-intensive funding cycles, organizations like Pitch It! hold Shark Tank-like showcases, where entrepreneurially minded non-profits pitch new and exciting ideas to a business-savvy panel.
This represents a cultural shift for many non-profits, who are accustomed to speaking the language of the academic – logical, straightforward, and terse. Now, the non-profits are learning to speak and think “entrepreneur,” – that is, excitedly, hopelessly optimistic, and inspirinal.
Innovation Consulting in For-Profit Businesses
Meanwhile, in the for-profit world, businesses are uncovering new uses for innovation consultants all the time. In doing so, they are re-discovering their entrepreneurial spirit and bringing a sense of excitement and adventure to the workplace.
In the current business climate, a passion for innovation is change is almost necessary to stay relevant in many industries. Leaders must not only navigate change, but also seek it out. In GeauxPoint’s white paper titled “2020: Can You Get There?” we identified the four major sources for change in the insurance industry, namely disruptive innovations, technological upheaval, consumer-culture shifts, and price-determination fluctuations. The same challenges are being posed to other industries besides insurance, as well. In cases such as these, innovation consultants often times are the first to spot large problems that may go undetected by entire industries
Increasingly, businesses are looking outside of their walls for assistance in dealing with large-scale changes. These organizations are reaching out to tech-savvy, trend watching professionals to help them blaze new trails.
A main benefit of this is that powerhouse consulting — such as that offered by world-leading consultants like Deloitte, Pew, Kaiser, etc. — is being brought down to the local level. Now, small and large businesses alike can meet face-to-face with knowledgably professionals who are dispersing from technological can innovative epicenters to smaller cities.
The rapid pace of innovation and change that is driving the demand for innovation consultants will likely continue for some time. As these consultants continue to scale up to meet demand for their services, businesses are eager to retain these professionals. A positive working relationship between an innovation consultant and business can be a lucrative venture and may even be a necessity for industries in the midst of transformation.