How an MBA can Help you Drive Strategic Innovation in your Business

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For those with entrepreneurial ambitions, a business education program such as an MBA from Hult International Business School can help the development of strategic innovation within their business. Here’s how…  

Digitally-focused courses

More business education institutions are making their syllabus very digitally-focused so that they remain relevant to the digital era and the way businesses are implementing digital technology in every aspect of their operational models. The rise of digital technologies across many different industries has changed the way the world views and does business, while also creating feelings of fear and unease, as the pace is often so quick, that some companies struggle to keep up with the latest innovations and their subsequent costs. 

Competition is fierce, and those managing at executive and CEO levels must be prepared to keep up with other businesses in their field, while creating new ways for digital technologies to boost opportunities for their own company. Many institutions offer digitally-focused courses that demonstrate how business leaders can implement a digital strategy into their business model, executing it with leadership to ensure a positive company transformation.   

An understanding of disruptive technology

 Disruptive technologies are new and innovative technologies that are transforming the landscape of business and the way companies interact with consumers, handle data, create products, grow sales, develop business strategy and work on plans for future growth. There is increasing pressure for entrepreneurs, CEOs and executives of companies to have a digital vision that utilises disruptive technologies to ensure the survival of their business in a competitive industry. 

Business schools are noting this, and offer students courses that raise awareness of disruptive technologies and their importance in a business landscape. Hult International Business School for instance offers its students a nano-course that explores current innovative technologies such as AI, robotics, drones, The Internet of Things, 3D printing, VR, machine learning and more. The course explores ways in which entrepreneurs and business people can implement these technologies into their business plans while overcoming any challenges that come with such implementation.   

Sustainability

A business that thinks about its economic and environmental impact will outlive those that do not. Many MBA courses teach students the importance of sustainability awareness. Being innovative in terms of sustainability goes far beyond designing more environmentally friendly packaging and choosing to produce greener products for consumers – it goes right down to a company’s business model. 

Entrepreneurs and business owners need to find ways to reduce both their costs and the amount of waste they produce. An MBA teaches business professionals and entrepreneurs how to drive sustainable innovations in terms of protecting a business from equipment shortages, price drops and other market factors so that business operations are improved and manufacturing processes are more efficient – saving time, the environment and money. Improving a business’ carbon footprint will engage more potential employees and raise a brand’s profile in the eyes of the general public.  

Planning

Innovation should be a strong part of any entrepreneur’s business plan. You should have a clear sense of how your business will grow and develop. An MBA helps entrepreneurs to understand the most important areas of planning a business strategy so that their company survives and makes money in a highly competitive environment. Many MBA courses cover how to make profits, assess competition, build up a positive reputation, establish relationships with consumers, give value for money, enhance the quality of a product or service, market that service successfully to the public (using the latest in digital technology), assess industry trends and analyse trends and data. A strong awareness of the market you plan to grow your business in is essential to its success.  

Communication

Communication is one of the most important aspects of company innovation and strategy. Improved communication means better relationships with staff, suppliers, clients and consumers, which leads to company progression and overall growth. An effective business model analyses consumer needs and listens to feedback, observing customer behaviours and implementing solutions and ideas based on them. 

As Prof. Fenwick of Hult International Business School suggests, in today’s competitive workplace, it is all the more important for companies to focus on employee retention and commitment. This can be achieved through communication, and managers connecting and engaging with their employees. Fenwick refers to this as ‘identity leadership’. If an employee devotes their time to working for an organisation and goes above and beyond what is expected of them, they expect this to be noticed and rewarded (known as the psychological contract). In using identity leadership in communication, both the social and psychological environment of an organisation is improved, boosting task performance and employee well-being. As Prof Fenwick states, ‘strong social identities at work motivate individual employees to favour group goals over personal goals, benefiting the welfare of the organisation.’ 

An MBA degree highlights the importance of communication with a business, demonstrating to students how poor communication can have a negative impact on business procedures and practices. It also highlights how communication can help identify areas of weakness in a company business plan, shining a spotlight on areas where staff may need more training, where a company may require additional resources, and how a company can meet its financial goals and create intellectual property.      

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