Northern Lakes Economic Alliance • 231-582-6482 • firstname.lastname@example.org
What is it, who is it, and why do we need it?
Hannah Sanderson, Business Attraction & Growth
They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different results which, for a business, can be a death sentence. But what if the answer to your desired change was hidden in one of your current employees? When it comes to the ever changing economy and business world, it is important for businesses to have an intrapreneur on staff.
No, this isn’t another position to hire for. Intrapreneurs are the creative individuals in the
organization, the people who use entrepreneurial skills without incurring the risks of entrepreneurial endeavors. This is someone who can offer creative ideas on a project that fosters innovation within a company.
What are the key differences between an entrepreneur and an intrapreneur? An entrepreneur starts a new business and assumes all the risk with their endeavor where an intrapreneur already works for a business and has the company that they work for to fall back on; the company is the one truly taking the risk.
Entrepreneurs are the ones who must raise the capital, whereas an intrapreneur, if they need of any sort of backing, can usually count on their employer for support. The entrepreneur works towards a leading position in their market, whereas the intrapreneur works to renew and refresh the existing organizational structure, culture, or process within the company. Both individuals have entrepreneurial traits such as their ability to be innovative, however they use their skills to work towards different outcomes.
So why do we need intrapreneurs in the workplace? These are the people that will help keep a company from doing the same thing over and over. Intrapreneurs are those in the company that keep everyone on their toes, that can help the company take steps forward or jump a hurdle that they are currently facing due to their ability to think outside of the box. Their efforts often times save their
company money; instead of contracting out for R&D, the intrapreneur will do the majority of the research beforehand and then bring their idea to management. These dollars can then be used in alternate ways to benefit the company.
Industries around the world are taking advantage of the wide variety of financial and operational opportunities that their current talent already possesses.
Who are your intrapreneurs?