Group Innovation
ATD Blog

Intraprenuership-Enabled Organizations

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

A great mind once said it’s not just about seeing the connections and opportunities, it is also the act of weaving possibilities together to create something new and exciting.

Precisely! We keep talking and conferring about the most trending topics, with entrepreneurship being one of them. An equally important phenomenon is the art of being an intraprenuer.

An intraprenuer is a dexterous person who, within the limits of their organization, extends their reach to possible creations that are pioneering, classic, and amazing.

An organization needs intraprenuers, as every organization needs to be on the top if its game. To better understand the role of an intraprenuer, let’s take the example of an entrepreneur. When an entrepreneur starts their own business, they do it because they are:

  • passionate for the area of work that they are about to begin a business in
  • focused and confidence
  • a go-getter with a set strategy in place
  • ready to fail and learn from mistakes
  • motivated and know their product and service well
  • knowledgeable about the competition and industry
  • determined to succeed, regardless of their level of experience.

These are the same qualities and values an intraprenuer will bring to their role in the organization, but only if the organization believes in the process of embracing change and believing in innovation. Bringing a few talented people on board who possess the skills of being the complete intraprenuer cannot do much unless the organization chooses to give them the opportunity and the environment to innovate.

Great folks have popularly said, “The only difference between success and failure is hunger.” Every entity, whether an organisation or an individual, will only succeed if they have hunger, drive, and passion to do to what innovation and change processes ultimately expect.


Now the key question is why most companies and team members desist from being that intraprenuer. It is probably because many of us fear failure and its consequences for the individual and the organization. But that’s not true. Failure is only when you start to believe it to be one. It is how you would actually present your failure and how would you present it to others and yourself.

Failure is actually the key to success and to any change that you embrace, and that is the core of intraprenuership.

If the art of intraprenuership is practiced and followed, it enables the employee to explore possibilities, work on multiple levels, innovate, define processes, and bring value to the organization.


Intraprenuership adds value for the individual’s career and the organization, and it lets departments and management focus on areas they probably hadn’t previously considered.

A striking example is Sun Microsystems. Patrick Naughton, a developer, almost left Sun in 1995 because he believed they were missing out on the fast-growing PC consumer market. He was convinced to stay and help Sun set up a group dedicated to the consumer market. This is where a group member, James Gosling, created an elegant object-oriented programming language called Oak, which was later renamed Java.

This is how organizations encourage intraprenuership and intraprenuer-lead organizations. They need to work consolidated and in tandem to achieve the unexplored horizons of possibilities.

About the Author

Mehul Darooka is a talent development consultant focused on teambuilding, management development, communication skills, and sales and marketing. Contact him via email at [email protected].

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