Life Hacking – Great Work Hack Series #4

Today’s humble attempt is a draw  a connect from an article I wrote on Social Entrepreneurship and how the model and process can be co related within IBM, being  an Intrapreneur and how to leverage it for “Digital’ Innovation.

Outside in Approach


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So what is the official definition of Intrapreneurship anyway  – In 1992, The American Heritage Dictionary acknowledged the popular use of a new word, intrapreneur, to mean “A person within a large corporation who takes direct responsibility for turning an idea into a profitable finished product through assertive risk-taking and innovation”. Intrapreneurship is now known as the practice of a corporate management style that integrates risk-taking and innovation approaches, as well as the reward and motivational techniques, that are more traditionally thought of as being the province of entrepreneurship.

“Intrapreneurship refers to employee initiatives in organizations to undertake something new, without being asked to do so.” [5] Hence, theintrapreneur focuses on innovation and creativity, and transforms an idea into a profitable venture, while operating within the organizational environment. Thus, intrapreneurs are Inside entrepreneurs who follow the goal of the organization. Intrapreneurship is an example of motivation through job design, either formally or informally. (See also Corporate Social Entrepreneurship)


Ideation Model & Process


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If I have to hack the Entrepreneurship- ‘Lean start up’ ideation & Incubation process in short – it may look some what like this : Build , Measure , Learn and Re-apply & scale it larger.You may not scale it larger if need be.

I have added one more keyword after discussion- ‘Build- Apply – Measure – Learn’ ..The key is to  apply the Idea that will help address business problems to reap business outcomes that are profitable as well !!


 What are the key factors that drive Intrapreneurship behaviour ? 

This is how I would summarize them in my own words

  • Hunger: Drive Growth ,Innovation , serving a community with a purpose & goals.
  • ‘Like’ Minded : Bear a common interest & problem to solve.
  • Change & Collaboration : Recognize these factors are inevitable.
  • Accelerated process models ,  jump the queue and apply to learn faster.


B2B Enterprise Context

Linkedin :  I am not surprised that when I was exploring more on this topic , I understand Linkedin‘ started an Idea Incubator for its Employees – a natural progression for Hackdays.

Tata Nano is another classic example of how it disrupted the marketplace.The Tata Nano is a city car manufactured by Tata Motors. Made and sold in India, the Nano is the cheapest car in the world today. Lim, Chaisung, Seokhee Han, and Hiroshi Ito. “Low-cost disruptive innovation by an Indian automobile manufacturer.” (2009).(Reference)

IBM has its own Technology Adoption program  & recently hosted a Client Experience Idea Jam where thousands of IBM employees jammed on how we create the best experiences for our clients from March 12–15th, 2013.

Rational “Voice of the Client” Event Program – Innovative approach that is helping to influence the future of Software & Systems delivery .Rational takes client input seriously. They stage events throughout the year to hear from their clients, elicit feedback, and influence products direction!

Social Media -IBM Software Digital Influence Case study

IBM Software Group with collaborative support from marketing co created this program with Social@Ogilvy,went out there and gained significant market share for our products via digital influence and recruited , enabled & developed subject matter experts to drive digital advocacy.This practice moved onto being picked up for a classroom case study at IIMA. Also a published case study on ISB & Ivey.

To Sum it all – New buzz word is ‘Intrapreneurship’ -some are experimenting in many ways , some have hacked it.

Thank you for your attention.Would be keen to hear your “Intrapreneurship’ story 🙂 

Disclaimer: The opinions and interests expressed on my blogs are my own and does not necessarily represent my company’s positions.


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