Every new company starts out innovating. Whether it’s a new service, new product, or more efficient way of doing things, innovation is the reason new company startups are successful. Usually there’s a massive focus on innovation during a company’s first few years. But as companies grow, innovation takes a back seat. The focus shifts to execution. This is a normal and healthy transition, and every company reaches this stage in its own timeline, based on its growth cycle.
But how do you make sure your company doesn’t lose its innovation entirely?
defi SOLUTIONS Chief Product Officer Kartheek Veeravalli shared his thoughts recently, answering just that question. Here’s a condensed version of his original LinkedIn post.
When defi started to make the shift toward focusing on execution, our solution was to build a dedicated innovation team (we call it the Emerging Products Team). It exists to:
1. Understand our clients’ pain points
2. Gather innovative ideas across the company
3. Prioritize these ideas and
4. Deliver them from inception to completion
If you build a team like this, make sure its sole focus is building new products and exploring the latest technologies. It needs to have a good pulse on the clients’ challenges and market needs. But make sure it’s not tied down by day-to-day operations. It should follow the principles and guidelines of the company (for product vision, technology architecture, and overall mission) while also having the freedom to explore new ideas.
New challenges will pop up with a team like this. There will be tons of directions to go in. Here’s a quick guide to navigating the path:
1. Evaluate the options and understand the market scope of each option.
2. Prioritize and focus on a limited set of ideas/products and market segments.
3. Gather momentum and target a few quick wins before expanding the team.
4. Design a clear transition path so that you can transition the developed idea/product to a different team (like the Operations team or Existing Products team). That way your dedicated innovation team keeps its focus on innovation.
No matter how old your company is, it’s important to understand whether your focus is on innovation or execution. The transition from one to another won’t be one step. It will be a slow process over time. At defi we like to say, “Focus on today. Build for tomorrow.” If you’re struggling to dedicate time and resources for new innovative ideas, it may be time to start your Emerging Products Team!
Read all of Kartheek’s LinkedIn post here.
defi SOLUTIONS provides configurable loan origination systems, loan management and servicing, analytics and reporting, and a wide range of technology-enabled BPO services. If you’re struggling with the limitations of your current lending technology solutions, take the first step in realizing the benefits of modern technology. Contact our team today or register for a demo.