Are you making the most of great ideas within your firm?

I have just heard a fantastic story, which has got me thinking about where we get great ideas from. Apparently Japanese school girls can be partly thanked for the advent of texting.

The story goes that, when cell phones were prohibitively expensive, Japanese school girls bought pagers and developed number codes to send to each other. So: 111378 might mean “I’ll meet you at 8pm”. The phone companies got wind of this and significantly increased their investment and development of SMS technology.

How true this is, I’m not sure (Wikipedia has a far more technical, and probably accurate, version of why we are addicted to texting). However, it got me thinking about the ways in which we tap into ideas to market our businesses.

More often than not the ways in which we formally market or develop our businesses are led from the top – the CEO, business owners, or the marketing or business development teams.

But good ideas can come from anywhere and everyone should be actively encouraged to share their ideas with the firm:

  • Use your wider team to generate ideas on how to connect with clients.
  • Take advantage of the similar demographics that exist between your team members and clients, to understand what might be appropriate.
  • Encourage the development of relationships at all levels – for example many relationships rely on a great understanding and connection between key support staff, for example secretaries/PAs.
  • Develop incentives internally to encourage marketing and brand building behaviour. Try competitions between teams to see which team can achieve the most client contact over a period of time.
  • Encourage teams to identify areas in which they would like marketing /BD skills training, for example if they feel nervous about attending events, offer them networking training.

How do you continue to generate enthusiasm and ideas for building your business? Where have some of the best ideas come from?

Have you challenged your wider teams to develop their own ideas?

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