If you’re looking to up your business innovation, discover how innovation consulting can help you.

Are you a small business owner who’s looking for ways to grow? Do you worry the process of scaling up could hurt your creativity?

There are more than 30 million small businesses in the United States, but the vast majority won’t last more than a decade. If you expand too soon, you run the risk of failure. The same thing goes for waiting too long.

If you’re wondering how to take your business to the next level, read on. It outlines the basics of innovation consulting services and how to find a reputable workshop agency.

Person talking in front of a computer

What Do Consultants Do?

A consultant is a professional adviser who can help your business in a number of areas. They’re outsiders who can come in and analyze your business.

Are you reaching as many customers as possible? Do you have untapped markets you’re trying to break into? An innovation consultant will meet with you and your staff to determine your next move.

A fractional CTO, or chief technology officer, plays a similar role as an outside consultant. They can assess technological needs and help develop a new business plan.

An innovation consultant can help with prototyping, developing a mission statement, or starting a new marketing campaign.

You may need to update your computer infrastructure or enhance online security. Your website may need to be optimized or completely redone. You may need to migrate client records to the cloud.

Once the CTO has identified the major technical areas of growth, they might hand the project over to an innovation consultant. An innovation consultant can help with prototyping, developing a mission statement, or starting a new marketing campaign.

Does Your Business Need an Innovation Consultant?

If you want to keep up with your competition, hiring an innovation consultant is a good idea. They can help with time management, streamlining operations, and generating new ideas for your business.

Innovation consultants can help update your management style. You may have been operating as a small team for years. Your employees may be resistant to change. Having the right management structure can help new employees feel at home.

Innovation doesn’t have to be expensive. You just need to be open to new ways of thinking.

For example, you may not realize that you’re having too many meetings, or that you could be outsourcing some of your full-time positions. Innovation consultants provide that vital outsider’s perspective which will help you grow.

Person preparing to write on a board

Innovation doesn’t have to be expensive, and it doesn’t mean you have to change the good parts of your business. You just need to be open to new ways of thinking.

Changing Your Company’s Structure

Before you can move ahead, you’ll need to figure out what’s working and what needs to change. Innovation consulting firms can help narrow down what’s hindering progress.

One surprising culprit might be staff meetings. Meetings are notorious time and money-wasters. They cost American businesses more than $250 billion each year.

Meeting room

The great thing about an innovation consultant is that they’ll generate solutions. Maybe the solution to your meeting problem is to meet in smaller groups. Or maybe you can record meetings for staff to view later.

Having ideas is wonderful, but they’re only a start. You’ll need to work with your innovation consultant to bring your ideas to life.

In general, finding original solutions to common problems can help your company thrive. You may find that you want to outsource your human resources and accounts payable positions. Or you may need to bring a full-time IT person.

Having ideas is wonderful, but they’re only a start. You’ll need to work with your consultant to bring your ideas to life. Again, the more flexible you can be, the better.

More Ways to Jump-Start Innovation

In addition to hiring a fractional CTO and innovation consultant, there are several more ways you can help your business grow.

A design sprint, for example, is often helpful for businesses on the verge of expansion. It’s a five-day process with an emphasis on creativity, prototyping, and user testing.

Person talking in a meeting

Design sprints can give you that edge back. It’s all about taking the time to try out new ideas. These sprints are considered low-risk and high-output.

If you’re going to try a design sprint, you can involve your innovation consultant. They may be able to lead small groups or provide guidance for the entire company.

Another option for encouraging growth would be to host a retreat or corporate offsite for your staff. It could be a weekend or just a few evenings after work. All your staff would be welcome to contribute their ideas to improve your company.

Finding Reputable Innovation Consulting Firms

If you’re on the lookout for a good innovation consulting firm, talk to your colleagues. They may have a great referral, along with tips on streamlining business operations.

Look for a consultant with at least 10 years of experience. They should have a background in thought leadership and design, as well as a good understanding of your field. Talk to a few consultants before you make your final decision.

Our founder is an entrepreneur with more than 20 years of experience. He has extensive experience in design and technology and can work with businesses of any size.

Two men laughing

We offer regular meetups to the Austin community. Every month, we focus on a successful design sprint and break down the steps involved. It’s a great way to preview the services we can offer your company.

Take the time and look at our website and blog. You can contact us by email and we’ll respond right away. We can customize your design sprint experience, help you find a fractional CTO, or connect you with an innovation consultant.