Honing Skills and Potential: The Purpose of Business Competitions

Ever had that feeling your company isn’t as lively or as inventive as it should be? Perhaps your employees simply need to be spurred into action by hosting a business contest of your own. This activity won’t be a waste of time and resources according the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and may in fact help you in the long run. “Competitions generate diversity in three critical inputs to the innovation process: motivations, participants and organizations. This diversity, in turn, generates a wider variety and greater number of solutions to any given problem.”

Spurring Innovation

To organize the contest in such a way that your employees won’t see it as a waste of their time, the same is true for competitions that involve other companies, especially contests run through social networking sites. In other words, participants have to know what’s in it for them. Organizers can work with an expert like Skild to create a custom contest platform that makes it easier to manage all contest aspects, from promotion and entry collation to judging and awarding.

To most economists and management experts, the true purpose of any contest is to foster creativity, introduce a change of pace, and instill a competitive mindset among workers to dispel the dissatisfaction created by the daily routine. In short, a contest that challenges teams to up their game makes it possible for innovations to take place. Prestigious business competitions also spur industries to uphold the highest standards and remain competitive on the international stage.

In any case, contest organizers must see to it team dynamics don’t fall apart due to unhealthy competition. This happens whenever competitors strive to win at the expense of others. In the context of businesses, this can be seen whenever large enterprises strive to monopolize a market, which causes other businesses to be run aground and file for bankruptcy.

By applying the correct contest management principles, it should be easier to maintain a level playing field among all participants. Meanwhile, those who are taking part in any business competition should keep their focus on the potential benefits.

(Article Excerpt and Image from Spurring Innovation Through Competitions, Massachussets Institute of Technology, September 17, 2013)

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