Living in a global world equals the chances of success
Many entrepreneurs come to understand that in order to move forward, they not only need to attract the consumer, but also to be able to regularly improve their offer in such a way that it is impossible to refuse it.
And in this sense, innovation in the business process and in technology is a means of increasing their own competitiveness.
If we want to develop innovation activity and increase the competitiveness of the Kazakhstani economy as a whole, we need to begin by persistently, methodically and thoroughly filling our daily lives with high-quality offline and online services.
And for this purpose – to work, learn, read, experiment, issue ideas, prototypes on the mountains, so that each participant of the innovation market in its place created a unique, high-quality product, viable, resistant to external influences. Then a new, globally competitive and innovative economy will be built and structured out of this scope of work.
It is only necessary to take a simple idea as a starting point for moving forward: innovation is not a state program.
It’s a way of thinking, an active lifestyle, it’s a rush, because it’s inextricably linked to the notion of commercialization today, so people who innovate must think about them in the categories of business process and constantly make efforts to keep their product viable.
Entrepreneurial activity is on the rise, and this is a good sign. But in order for many newly established businesses to show sustainable growth in the long term, many start-ups and experienced entrepreneurs need to change their attitudes towards business.
This will require breaking another stereotype in their subconscious: startups (whatever their area of expertise) are not “making money quickly”.
We often have such a desire, it is understandable and has a quite rational explanation: the competitive environment in Kazakhstan and in the sphere of traditional offline services and online start-ups is still quite weak, and to understand this, you do not even have to look at the Ranking of competitiveness of the regions of the Republic of Kazakhstan, the daily reality is much more eloquent.
And in the absence of worthy competitors, entrepreneurs dictate conditions and prices to consumers.
If we want to build an innovative economy not on the sand of easy money received from the state or trusting consumers, but on a more solid foundation, we will have to go through a step-by-step implementation of consistent innovations in both production and business. And here there is a field of activity for SMEs, for large companies and for the state.
The main burden and responsibility falls on the shoulders of small and medium-sized businesses.
If any Korean, American, or even Russian novice businessman can make plans to resell his project (no matter what sphere he belongs to) into reliable hands in the future, Kazakhstani entrepreneurs, who are familiar with the flour of customization, are forced to rely on themselves and their team throughout the development of the project.
It is difficult, but in fact, this scenario of business development looks more sensible, because it means in a good sense the inevitability of creating and strengthening domestic brands.
Functions and interests of big business in the domestic innovation market are well illustrated by the situation of twenty years ago, when the first dotcoms appeared.
Their creation entailed huge man-hours and money expenditures by the current standards. These were big risks, and the tools of their forecasting were created on the basis of many examples of failures.
But all the services and applications created at that time laid the foundation for the creation of new, easier in terms of investment and costs, modern products and technologies, someone was lucky enough to have breakthrough innovations.
Kazakhstan’s big business resists investing in innovation out of fear of risk. Risk management is a complex process, and managers sometimes lack the necessary competencies.
In this situation, it seems reasonable not to undertake large-scale projects immediately, associated with large infusions and expected high profits, covering a significant market segment.
We know that changes in technology are often ahead of market needs, which means that they are not formed only by social orders, and the consumer’s response to them is unpredictable.
The way out is to invest in small projects with little return on investment, and for this purpose to create serial entrepreneurship within the company, to engage in incubation of small forms of business.
Most of the time, it’s the inertia of thought. To work with innovations, a completely different management is required, which is able to work with the phenomenon of creativity. A classical manager is simply not ready for irrational approaches to solving problems.
He is not ready to accept the fact that the project he leads can develop chaotically. This means often reformatting the consciousness of the company’s top management, structural changes within it, and no one likes shocks.
What can and should the state really do to develop innovative activity? “The state should not replace the private sector, it only acts as an organizer, catalyst and coordinator of the processes of formation and development of the national innovation system, but its main task is to attract private capital to actively participate in the innovation processes.
As we can see from this excerpt from the Industrial-Innovative Development Strategy, the state is quite aware of its role as an “organizer, catalyst and coordinator”. In fact, the government is consistently trying to force the private sector to invest (intellectual and financial) in innovation.
This is a normal practice, taking into account the fact that even in the most liberal countries the main customer for the development of technologies is still the state, while business is always the most conservative element of the innovation system, which comes at the end of the chain and never stands ahead.
A striking example of this is perhaps the most marketable country in the world – the United States. The state’s share in the total volume of investments in the famous Silicon Valley exceeds 50%. Two thirds of the financing of the private university MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) is also provided by the state.