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Thought Starter: Are we harnessing power of women 'intrapreneurs'?

Julia Keady,
01 September 2016

I was listening to a podcast last night by Smita Singh from Womenpreneur program in the USA, and something she said really hit me... 

We can create just as much impact in the world by being an 'intrapreneur' – working inside an organisation and innovating – as much as you would as an 'entrepreneur'. 

I could almost sense a collective sigh of relief at there being language around this, and thought maybe we should use this language more often, and recognise the great women in our organisations who are 'intrapreneurs'. 

I have coached a few women over the last few years who are 'intrapreneur-ing' in organisations but don't feel valued. Yet have no desire to take the ultimate risk and do it in on their own. So there lies the rub: the unrealised opportunity. 

So perhaps by us all adopting this language, we may find new ways to support, incentivise, reward and recognise the great intrapreneurs - providing them meaning, autonomy and a space to create. The usual suspects, such as Deloitte, have got this worked out. Formal programs that allow employees to incubate and nurture ideas.

They have primed themselves to capture the world's best millenial talent too, and have a 'millenial mindset' which works 'with' not 'against' of desires of millenial generation. But not all intrapreneurs have to be millenials. They can also be your mature workforce. What are we doing to capture all that wisdom that allows for innovation? And in doing so, puts some spring back in the step of our older workforce. Ideas are powerful. Ideas can change the world. They always have, and always will.Language is equally powerful and can change the world.

What's one thing we can do this week that allows for that to shine?

The Xfactor Collective is a community of pre-vetted specialist consultants who help social change makers achieve their social mission. We have a diverse range of specialists across 300+ areas of specialisation, and this article was written by our Specialist Consultant Julia Keady. To find out more about working with Julia, or how the Collective can help you, please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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