Today's modern workplace resembles nothing like the workplace of 50 years ago. An increase in remote jobs, freelancers, late-night coders, and people working at all times of the night is a few of the many descriptions of today's workplace.
Besides those factors shaping today's workplace, the personality of a typical employee has also undergone a transformation which means that companies who want to thrive in the future must adapt.
One big adaptation that companies who want to win in the future must implement is to encourage their employees to think like entrepreneurs.
At first, partaking in this activity may seem counter-productive since it seems you'll be encouraging your employees to go and start their own business. But that's missing the big picture.
As this 2012 Harvard Business Review column pointed out, there are two types of entrepreneurs emerging. You have serial entrepreneurs who "have a desire to own their own business, tend to be more individualistic, and have a desire to control."
Next, there are the entrepreneurial-minded people who "tend to work well in teams, have an organized workplace, happier within organizations or within a group of people working together to achieve a goal."
As I was exploring this topic further, I reached out to Richard Trevino II who is the founder of Elevation Consulting Firm. Trevino is an author, an executive coach, and an international consultant who works with Fortune 100 and 500 companies on a myriad of topics, one of them being the entrepreneurial mindset.
To become an unmistakable company who maximizes their potential, it's imperative to fuse the entrepreneurial mindset into the company DNA for these three reasons.
1. Build trust and forge deeper connections.
To ultimately reach your vision, it's going to require a group effort along with having everyone working in sync. As Trevino mentioned to me, one of the biggest benefits to infusing this entrepreneurial mentality into the company DNA is "helping people take ownership and personal autonomy."
In a 2011 study published in Health Promotion International, having a sense of autonomy was shown to make workers more satisfied with their jobs along with improving their productivity. The antithesis of micromanaging people is allowing autonomy to be the new norm.
Instead of micromanaging each task, share the desired end result and expectations while allowing your employees to accomplish the mission in their unique way. By granting this amount of freedom, you're demonstrating trust through your actions, which goes further than your words.
2. Breed creativity and innovation.
At the heart of any company lies the necessity for continual growth because if not, irrelevance will soon be on the horizon. To stay competitive, "it takes a team effort and this innovative spirit can get lost at times when companies operate with a rigid hierarchal structure" says Trevino.
One method to keep the innovative spirits brewing within the company is to loosen the reins and encourage employees to innovate and work on side projects without managerial approval.
3. Prevent the "clock-in clock our" mentality.
According to Gallup research published in 2013, 70 percent of U.S. employees are showing up unengaged to work on a daily basis while 52 percent of those workers are basically sleepwalking through the workday.
"Employees can mentally check out for the next 30 years and go on a voyage of shallow work," says Trevino.
It's a natural human inclination to desire to feel valuable. The workplace isn't any different. Employees want to feel like the work they're doing is valuable and matters.
To avoid this mentality, keep them up to date on the vision, where the company is going, and explain how what they do matters in the big picture. Lastly, let them have some say in the overall vision and direction of the company on various initiatives.
When you infuse the entrepreneurial mindset into the company DNA, you'll morph your employees into "intrapreneurs" and more importantly, will be on your way to becoming an unmistakable company who creates a bigger impact.