Intrapreneurship: A modern management essential

It seems there are more entrepreneurs now than ever before and there is nothing wrong with that. Entrepreneurs are the harbingers of new technologies, innovation and pioneering ventures, as evidenced by the constant rise of Silicon Valley.

As mentioned, the expansion of start-ups or small companies into large multinationals may have more to do with the behind-the-scenes grind, the managers.

As Mintzberg enlightened us, entrepreneurship is only one of many components of management. And without the involvement and participation of managers at different levels of the organization, development can often be a pipe dream.

In addition, growing up financially and materially is not enough. Creating an atmosphere of innovation throughout the organization and thereby creating meaningful impacts across the board is even more important if sustainable growth is the goal.

This can only be achieved when hiring managers act like entrepreneurs, i.e. lead like an intrapreneur. This is probably why three of the fourteen principles of management by Henri Fayol, the pioneer of modern management theory, support the necessity of intra-organizational entrepreneurship.

Compliance with individual interests

For entrepreneurs, the interests of the endeavors they initiate can also be called their interests, even if these endeavors only benefit others.

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In addition to managing people and resources, hiring managers must have this principle. This openness allows individuals to effectively move the organization towards its goal subject to the availability of resources. To do this, hiring managers must be open enough to embrace intrapreneurship in their management approach.

By instilling this quality, they will be able to effectively motivate the key strength of the organization, i.e. people. The most obvious result will be that beyond managers, the entire workforce in the organization will learn to adopt a single mindset that is fully aligned with the organization’s purpose. Compliance with this feature is also necessary for managers to place themselves in a modern management environment.

Initiative

For an organization to achieve higher success, it must explore new horizons. Exploring new opportunities should not only be a top-down approach where the top founder-entrepreneur pursues new endeavors alone. The key distinctions of an intra-creative manager are seeing the opportunity, knowing the feasibility of exploiting the said opportunity and mobilizing the productive force to do it. In short, hiring managers should strive to realize their managerial potential for the greater benefit of their organization by undertaking fruitful and sustainable initiatives.

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Organizations, where such a practice is in place, tend to have much healthier work environments along with operational excellence. As a result, hired managers develop a positive sense of belonging and a stronger sense of responsibility while implementing their ideas.

Additionally, it allows upper management to identify who has the tenacity to shine the light of the organization more successfully if and when they are given greater responsibilities in more important capacities.

Esprit de Corps

Great things are achieved when there is unbroken unity, steadfast optimism, and vibrant passion. After all, this optimism, along with unity, forms the pillars that determine the success of an organization.

Another strong reason to sincerely adopt this principle of introspection and team spirit is that belief among the workforce often lags behind and they feel doubtful about the possible results of their efforts. Then comes the section of big managers.

They use their incredible interpersonal skills to unwaveringly bring their human resources back to progress, keeping them relentlessly united and driving them all towards the organization’s goal.

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To do this, managers must have the right ability to revive people’s positive spirit and channel their accumulated ambition in a meaningful way. Above all, they must follow this vital Fayol principle if they are to purposefully shape the organizational landscape.

Finally, intrapreneurs should always try to define their necessity with much more material than what is presented here. In addition to keeping intrapreneurs on track with their organizational ambitions, they can increase their effectiveness by expanding their managerial thinking beyond the established goals of the organization they manage for.

These torchbearers of self-discovered paths must mentor, guide and develop intrapreneurs as well as more entrepreneurs from among their peers. Therefore, as long as there is a need to manage, significant achievements with opportunity, knowing the feasibility and mobilization of productivity will have an effective effect.


Nazma Sultana is the Director of Information Technology at Bangladesh Liberal Arts University. Nafees Ehass Chowdhury studies business at United International University and is an essayist. The authors acknowledge the valuable insights of AKM Lutfur Rahman, former director of AISD, one of the concerns of the US Embassy.



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