The Myth of the Intrapreneur

The Post-It note. Facebook’s “like” button. The Sony PlayStation. These products are all held up as legendary examples of the power of intrapreneurship — entrepreneurial creativity and innovation within large, established organizations. Since the term was coined in the 1980s, intrapreneurship has been sold to companies as a catch-all solution for fostering innovation. It’s been promoted to workers as a way to capture the creativity and excitement of entrepreneurship, but with more resources and less risk.

Intrapreneurs are supposed to be rebels, breaking the rules and swimming against the corporate tide. While this vision of the intrapreneurial maverick is certainly alluring, in truth it’s an ineffective way to drive innovation. After more than 20 years of researching innovation in large companies, it’s clear to me that the successful intrapreneur is often more myth than reality.

Click below to read the full article by Andrew Corbett for Harvard Business Review.

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