Monday, September 21, 2020
COVID-19, pandemic, rising unemployment rates and more—over the past few months, worrisome news has probably made you question everything, especially if you’re maneuvering through a highly uncertain business environment. As the metaphorical ship captain, reinventing your model and yourself is crucial. You already know the importance of innovation, but developing and implementing suitable strategies are also key. To help you reach your goals, look to Silicon Valley, a place with a proven history of positive disruption, creative energy and bold bets on the future. Here are five examples and stories you can leverage going forward.
Businesses tend to think that innovating means creating a perfect product or service that will make a difference from scratch. But why reinvent the wheel? You could just as well use and combine existing solutions to craft what the world needs. This is exactly what mmhmm did when they launched a revolutionary video conferencing platform with new features for maximum engagement.
Take a look at what’s going on around you, both in your immediate environment and in your core business. Could you tweak and combine existing services, solutions, assets and products to offer something new?
There’s always a way to make it through whatever life throws at you as long as you can adapt and imagine a future beyond your mental limitations. Look at Replika for instance, a startup created after the founder’s best friend died in an accident. The tragic event inspired her to develop a personal artificial intelligence to help her connect with him again.
It’s okay to blur the line between your personal and professional life when you identify potential useful initiatives. Don’t hesitate to mix skills, leverage your own sensitivity and desires, and tap into your deepest needs to feed creativity and trigger willingness to imagine new things.
Look at Jack Dorsey, founder of Twitter, who donated $1 billion to find solutions to fight COVID-19 and improve girls’ health and education. Or meet Patrick Brown, who founded Impossible Foods while on sabbatical from his position as a professor of biochemistry at Stanford University—his goal was to create meatless meat to protect the environment and a create a healthier option for consumers.
How could you put your network, position or relationships to good use? What could you do or create? Who could you help? What paradigm could you change?
If you want to make it happen, California is the place to be—after all, this is where gold diggers and pioneers headed to find and build a better life. Today’s entrepreneurs have the same mindset when they venture into uncharted territory—or “just” create new worlds when needed. Enter Virbela, an immersive virtual world like Second Life where remote teams can meet for trade shows, conferences and mundane work events. This is where and how Laval Virtual hosted the 2020 “Laval Virtual World” event.
Train yourself to see new technologies (virtual worlds, virtual and augmented reality, remote service...) as a source of opportunities—or maybe even inspiration for a new business idea. Explore these trends as if you were mapping unchartered territory. After all, today’s business environment is evolving constantly and you have a role to play in this process.
Apple’s iconic founder and former CEO of Apple was one of Silicon Valley’s key thought leaders. His famous quotes still apply today—for instance, when he explained getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have happened to him because he was able to enter one of the most creative periods of his life. Or when he stated that the only way to do great work is to love what you do and that people should have the courage to follow their heart and intuition.
Find inspiration in great successes and achievements. What vision, idea, initiative or state of mind could you bring to your organization? From risk-taking approaches to customer experience management, from resilience to self-confidence through the quest for meaning, Silicon Valley is brimming with best practices to guide modern explorers.
Inspiring, innovative, disruptive—Silicon Valley’s boldness is one of its greatest assets. This is the mindset all companies should soak up, from top management to entry-level employees, at a time when innovation capacity can make all the difference. Connecting with these best practices is not just about being one step ahead, it’s also a way to imagine the future and be part of it.