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The idea behind the project is simple: Companies are asked to share practical things they have done that have improved the way they do business. Their stories will then be shared openly to help others explore and visualize ways they can improve their own companies.
Many smaller businesses are reluctant to implement new ideas and innovations into their companies, because they have difficulty understanding how the pieces fit together and dont have examples to follow, says Julie King, co-founder and managing editor of Candaone.com. As a magazine we are limited to sharing a few ideas at a time. By creating this open innovation project, we are expanding the opportunities to develop a more robust knowledge-base.
We expect that some business will share stories about how they have used technology to operate more efficiently, but we also want to hear about low-tech innovations as well, says King. For example, a Chinese restaurant that successfully transformed one third of its space to accommodate take-out customers with a luxurious waiting lounge would be a great example of customer-focused innovation.
To participate in the Business Innovation Challenge, businesses can go to http://www.canadaone.com/innovation/ where they will be asked to fill out a short form that walks them through the process of sharing their stories. While spam will be removed from the system, businesses are invited to brag about their acts of innovation.
The challenge will rely on self-policing through a ratings system to help the best ideas emerge. As stories are published, users will have the ability rate projects, which will also be tagged to make them easy to find as the number of projects increases.
There has been a lot of hype about this being the information age, but information is meaningless unless it is transformed into knowledge that can be acted upon. With the Business Innovation Challenge we hope to contribute to the creation of knowledge for small and medium-sized companies, says King.