The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has already had a significant impact on the global economy. Experts have warned that we are heading for the worst recession any of us have ever seen. The news is certainly grim, but could innovation prove to be a lifeline for businesses in these challenging times?
According to the proverb, Necessity is the mother of invention. So, could this prove true in these worrying times and what barriers could prevent innovation right now?
Why now is the best time for innovation
With all of the uncertainty the coronavirus outbreak has brought, it’s easy to think that now would be a poor time to consider innovation. However, did you know it could actually be the best time?
During times of crisis, innovation can be a lifeline. People are pushed to get creative in order to find solutions to current issues. Businesses impacted by the lockdown have had to come up with ways to continue earning. This has meant branching out into different sectors and adjusting their product offerings.
The truth is, when we face severe hardships, we have to adapt in order to survive. The same can be said for businesses. So, it is during challenging times like this that we actually see the best innovations.
What barriers do businesses face?
Although innovation is crucial during economically challenging times, it’s also a lot harder to achieve. There are a lot of barriers that businesses are facing right now due to the pandemic. Just some of the common barriers to innovation include:
- Uncertain finances
- Failing to act upon ideas
- Inability to focus
In order to innovate, businesses do need to invest some amount of money into their ideas. The trouble is, due to the lockdown, many businesses are facing severe financial difficulties. They are struggling to simply survive, let alone invest thousands into innovation.
Many businesses are also scared to try something new right now. While taking risks is a part of succeeding in any business, the pandemic has greatly increased risk levels. It’s easy to get bogged down by fear during an international crisis.
Then there’s businesses who have potentially identified new opportunities but simply aren’t acting on them. It’s also hard for businesses to focus on innovations due to decreased focus. These are just some of the common barriers to innovation right now.
How to overcome barriers to innovation
Innovation has been cited as a major focus for businesses since before the pandemic. Research by RSM showed that 86% of businesses thought innovation was a significant driving force in their competitive advantage.
In order to push through the barriers right now, there are a number of options available. Financial help can be secured by investors. There are still investors out there looking to spend money in the right places. Businesses also need to push through the fear and see innovation as a lifeline right now.
It isn’t easy, but businesses which manage to focus on innovation are ultimately going to be the ones that survive the economic impact of Covid-19.