Everyone wants to win. We all want success and good fortune on our side. We all want to be a champion. But what does being a champion have to do with startup, corporate innovation?
Winning means getting that hot new startup to revolutionize your company from the outside in. It means securing that exciting deal with the budding new technology firm taking the world by storm. It means driving your company forward and becoming the best in your market. Being a champion helps to achieve all of this.
Championing startups and innovative ideas isn’t easy. It can often take a lot of time to convince others to see the benefits in change, but the payoffs for persistence can be huge. As a champion you are chief evangelist and it is your role to bring others round to your way of thinking.
So how do you become a champion?
Champions are genuinely passionate and excited about the startup they’re championing. They believe truly that it will be a success. When they sell the idea to their colleagues it’s with a real spark, convincing others that because they believe in it so much it must be a good idea.
Although being a champion isn’t solely “sales” it shares various traits. One key part of sales is persistence. If you stop talking about something people forget – just think about the news headlines from last month. Do you remember what they were about? Neither do I! It may seem as if you’re being annoying but eventually people have to give in a hear you out.
Champions understand their company’s problems and how the startup can solve them. There is no better way to convince other around you to solve a problem externally than with hard facts. Understand the costs associated with solving the problem yourselves and understand fully the solution offered.
Be open and keep in regular contact with the startup you’re championing. Let them know how the process in your company works and keep them in the loop so they know all their sales work isn’t falling on deaf ears. Better yet, help them sell to the decision maker. Set up a meeting with the decision maker with the startup and help them learn what the decision maker wants, whether they have any competition and what numbers need to be fixed.
By championing the right startup and idea you could really help improve your company. Helping the startup is not only a win for them but a win for you too. Your company will see greater success and you’ll be recognized as the one who saw the potential first.
Image: Brad K