Entrepreneurs and leaders have been around since the dawn of time. These types of people are the backbone of civilization, the Industrial Revolution and today’s startups.
What is an Intrapreneur?
There is a newer concept in business that focuses on the same principles as entrepreneurship. An intrapreneur is an entrepreneur within a business. An Intrapreneur uses the same skills, resources and ideology to tackle problems, but without the associated risks as an entrepreneur.
Intrapreneur was originally coined in the 1980’s by Gifford Pinchot. Companies at the time used intrapreneur when they needed new and groundbreaking ideas for their business. Now firms are creating a business culture of empowered employees.
Enabling employees allows problems to be solved with greater response time. It allows people to be proactive and the company less reactive to the market and customer needs.
Think of it this way. Google encourages the intrapreneur mentality. They expect their developers to take 20% of their time to work on outside projects.
Why? The 20% of work that is done by Google’s developers leads to more products for Google’s customers.
*I’m not encouraging businesses to take the same approach as Google into their operations. The principle of the 20% can still be instilled without disrupting operations.
When managers have an open policy to ideas brought to them, have dialogue and make change, it empowers employees, creating value in their work.