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Innovation for small businesses

In today’s evolving business landscape, small businesses may find themselves navigating through challenges and uncertainties they have never dealt with before.

In this environment, it is important to remember the importance of innovation and the role it plays in helping small businesses remain competitive and build resilience.

Innovation is the driving force that propels us ahead, fosters growth and ensures long-term sustainability. To help local businesses better understand how innovation applies to small business, we spoke to Mo Hamdouna, the driving force behind full-service creative agency Mo Works, and these were some tips he shared with us.

The power of Business Model Canvas

The Business Model Canvas is a useful tool that allows small businesses to create, validate, and re-validate business models. It is not a one-time process, but rather a repetitive process that requires constant evaluation and adjustment.

Creating a Business Model Canvas involves identifying key components such as customer segments, value propositions, channels, customer relationships, revenue streams, key resources, key activities, key partnerships, and cost structure.

By thoroughly analysing these elements, small businesses get a wide view of every aspect of their business and allows them to adapt to changing market conditions and identify areas needing improvement.

Building an innovation strategy

Developing a comprehensive innovation strategy helps small businesses to identify opportunities for innovation, both externally and internally.

Externally, you can engage in market research, work with experts in the industry, and look out for emerging trends to identify any gaps or potential areas for innovation. This could involve staying up to date with technological advancements, regulatory changes, and shifts in consumer behaviours.

Internally, promoting a culture of creativity and problem-solving is essential. Encouraging your employees to contribute ideas and collaborate, and investing in employee training can help to encourage internal innovation.

Combining insights from both external and internal factors allows businesses to position themselves to take on new opportunities and stay ahead in the competitive market.

Cultivating a supportive atmosphere

Creating a supportive atmosphere requires leadership, commitment, clear communication, and recognition of efforts. This type of environment encourages innovation and is incredibly valuable for small businesses.

A big part of encouraging innovation involves experimentation and viewing any failures as learning opportunities rather than setbacks. Not only does this shift in mindset help to welcome healthy risk-taking, but it also promotes a culture of continuous improvement.

Employees should feel that they can share their thoughts and ideas without fear of judgement.

Innovation through collaboration

Collaboration can be approached in many ways, one of which can involve partnering with other businesses, research organisations, or academic institutions. These collaborations can provide fresh perspectives, shared resources, and access to new markets. When identifying potential collaborators, it is important to take a proactive approach. Things like networking events, industry conferences, and even online platforms can be great resources for connecting with like-minded businesses or individuals.

Innovation doesn’t always happen in isolation. Small businesses can significantly increase their innovative potential by seeking collaboration opportunities.

Financing innovation efforts

While innovation is important for small businesses, financing these efforts can occasionally prove to be a challenge. There are many options available that could help small businesses obtain funds for innovative projects, and these should actively be sought out. Avenues such as grants and incentives, private investors, and crowdfunding platforms are all worth exploring.

Building a compelling case for potential investors or backers is incredibly important. Make sure to clearly articulate the expected benefits and impacts of the innovation to help make your project more appealing.

In a world where change is constant and demands adaptability and resilience, embracing innovation is not just a strategic choice, but also considered a necessity for the survival and success of small businesses.


Meet our Local Expert: Mo Hamdouna – Mo Works

Close up of smiling Mo Hamdouna owner of Mo Works
Mo Hamdouna is an entrepreneur on a mission to transform businesses into forces for positive change. For over 8 years, Mo has been the driving force behind Mo Works, a dynamic creative agency based in Docklands. Headquartered in Melbourne, Mo Works also has additional offices in Adelaide and Amman, Jordan. Mo Works’ are experts in crafting powerful digital solutions that empower companies to effectively communicate their sustainable solutions through strong branding, clear messaging, and transformative technology.

Mo Works


Content published January 2024

Local experts Small Business Festival

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