We are Intrapreneurial.
An intrapreneur is defined as, “A person within a corporation who takes direct responsibility for turning an idea into a profitable finished product through assertive risk-taking and innovation.” We have an ownership mindset about the business, and are empowered to make things happen as we explore new ideas & make decisions without limitations.
I am a fourth generation entrepreneur. My family has worked for themselves for so long that it is all I can remember. My father always taught that it is best to control ones own destiny, to have your problems and opportunities be your own. It sure makes sense to me. The last thing I want is to have someone else make decisions that determine my fate. By “being my own boss” I at least get to determine my own path.
When I started my company more than ten years ago, I wanted my employees to get a taste of being an entrepreneur and set out to make entrepreneurial traits and qualities a part of the culture. In fact, we set out to select our values by trying to figure out what our customers needed us to be in order to serve them best. This is the very nature of what Outside-In® is all about. Do what is best for the customer all of the time. Even when choosing values. After all, values are the true personality of the company. This represents what I hoped would be the ongoing actions and behaviors of my people!
One of our values became Intrapreneurship. I certainly didn’t invent the term; however, the word seems to represent what I wanted from employees. Be an entrepreneur. Act like an entrepreneur. Experience what it is like to be one. Sell, Lead, Serve. Exist as an entrepreneur. I felt then (and still believe) that if all employees embrace this then they could have a better day-to-day job.
You see, being an Intrapreneur is about working day-to-day like you own the place. To care like your name is on the door, and to have the kind of work experience and day-to-day role where anything is possible. If you see a problem, prioritize and fix it.
If you want to have more responsibility, get more knowledge. Perhaps you want and need more financial reward. If so, find a way to create equal or greater value for the organization. Intrapreneurs look to create value. They look for new market opportunities. They figure out how and when to innovate new products and services that make our customer’s world a better place.
Without intrapreneurs we would not be in the contingent staffing business, which represents so much of our growth in customers, revenues, and of course opportunities for future intrapreneurs. Without intrapreneurs we would not be in the search business. We would still be politely saying no to prospects and customers alike. Without intrapreneurs we could not help our relationships with services that support their job search with resume work, career coaching, and outplacement.
All of these seem big to me, and they are. Intrapreneurs help us change and evolve during turbulent and changing times. But I promise you that the best thing about being an Intrapreneur is the growth and learning that one receives in exchange for their ideas, innovation and hard work. At Outside-In® Companies, our real challenge is that we are flat, matrixed organizations. We don’t think much about titles, unless they make it more clear for our customers to deal with us. We will always be adding talent to the business. Everyone here is equal; we just play different roles!
Where else can someone do so much without taking on the financial risk themselves? Sure, some alumni have left to do their own thing. But, if you ask me, there is no greater compliment!