The Global Intrapreneur

by Steve Todd | November 02, 2009

  • My Vault
In my last">post I discussed the intrapreneur career choice, and defined an intrapreneur as an employee that delivers his or her ideas as part of a large, high-tech corporation. I also addressed the incorrect stereotype that an entrepreneur is the only career choice when it comes to innovation.

Both careers paths have their pros and cons. When considering which path to take, I am of the opinion that the intrapreneur choice presents a rather significant benefit: a global experience.

Joining a start-up does not necessarily mean that an entrepreneur lacks the opportunity to collaborate with global technologists. It is common for new companies to establish technology teams in two or perhaps three global locations.

A large, global company, however, should already have an established technology footprint throughout the world. Global product development for large corporations is a must-have. Diverse cultures create better products together. Purchase decisions in some countries are based on the presence of a local R&D center. Geographically distributed technologists have greater access to research at their co-workers’ local universities.

Intrapreneurs can have much more global fun tapping into this network of innovation. As an example, let’s explore the world-wide opportunities available at a few high-tech companies.

Consider my corporation (EMC). I work in Massachusetts. I have access to local researchers at Harvard University and MIT. I’m building an information storage device with my co-workers in Research Triangle Park in North Carolina (highest percentage of PhD population in the world) and colleagues in St. Petersburg, Russia (frequent collaboration with St. Petersburg State Polytechnical University). I joined with my co-workers in Shanghai, China and entered an idea in EMC’s global innovation contest. Some of these ideas are on their way to becoming products.

There are additional EMC technology teams located in Ireland, India, Israel, France, and the Netherlands. All of them are tied together on a common social-media backbone known as EMC ONE. This type of global availability is fertile ground for innovation in a way that can’t be achieved by a new start-up.

Take a few minutes and research the global reach andlocations of other large, high-tech corporations, such asIBM,Cisco,and Microsoft.

“Globally collaborative employee” is certainly something that you want to write down on your resume; but it’s more than that. It’s an unforgettable way to deliver your ideas.

How can you make your voice heard in these types of globally expansive corporations? This is the essence of innovating with influence, and future blog posts will be covering the basics of global employee impact.

Steve
http://stevetodd.typepad.com
Twitter: @SteveTodd
EMC Intrapreneur

Filed Under: Technology

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