When you work as a white-collar worker, you will often hear people giving you advice to “go out and start networking.” It sounds cliche, but if the ones who said it are your superiors with incomes ten times bigger than yours, then it is an advice that you should try to abide.
However, this advice works not just when you’re a white-collar worker. It is also applicable in the technology or startup industry when developing new technologies in order to innovate effectively. This approach is referred as ‘Open Innovation.’
Henry Chesbrough who coined the term ‘Open Innovation’ describes it as a “…more distributed, more participatory, more decentralized approach to innovation“ that will eventually help to create better innovations. In another article, Chesbrough mentions that the research & development team of a company should utilise external networks to complement their work, which eventually will create better innovations.
While I’ve never worked in a tech or startup company before, I must agree to this idea by Chesbrough. Having external networks will help create better innovations because the companies will gain better insights on what it’s like to be a user. Let’s say you want to develop an app for food delivery. You ought to have external networks to know what else your targeted audiences need, what do they think is lacking from other services, how they would they like to have their food delivered, etc.
It’s just a thought. But if you want to make a better world, for both you and your consumer, then start networking.