For most of today’s companies, both old and new, becoming innovative does not occur overnight. It is a collaborative effort between leadership, employees, and even outside sources. The majority of triumphant innovations transpires through research and development.

A company’s staff will always have their thoughts and opinions for possible resolutions to existing issues that they deal with on a day to day basis. Often, these individuals are invaluable assets when seeking innovation. No one knows the issues better than those that are forced to continually deal with them. The short term resolution may be readily available, but what about the long term solution? They may have fresh, new ideas about permanently fixing such issues. By utilizing the already present resources within a company, it is also a smart idea to involve current stakeholders, contractors, clients, and other professional acquaintances with the progression. It is highly possible that they will have even more innovative opinions and assistance to offer.

Companies must also research their potential market in order to determine which improvements or modifications are needed, if any. This will also help the company in determining what types of products or services the clients long for. This process may even lead to a change in the product as a whole. What was once thought to be “the best idea ever” may end up being changed altogether once outside sources give their opinions.

The current market and its trends should be studied as well, so that current trends can be recognized and pursued. Competitors should also be targeted. Companies should research how others are successfully or not so successfully doing. Trying out those same successful practices is a good idea, and steering clear of their mishaps is wise as well. Taking advantage of other company’s ideas or practices is not cheating, but rather, remaining ahead of the trend. Devoting extra time, effort, and money into specialized research or development team is always advisable. Such a team could evaluate current practices to determine if there is anything that your company could do to improve.

In many instances, companies view teamwork and partnerships as the key to their success with being, or even becoming, innovative. They are aware, however, that becoming innovative cannot be successfully done with only in-house resources. They must look to external sources, with matching or corresponding talents to collaborate with. An example of reaching out to external sources could relate to that of a company that handles online timecard software. This type of industry is so new that business leaders have no choice but to reach out to one another. Such a collaboration or partnership could be with other online software company leaders or vendors, to resolve issues that everyone is facing.