Kopis has been named one of the best places to work in South Carolina for three years in a row.
While we rose to fourth best place in 2021, the real honor came (to our surprise) that Kopis was the recipient of the New Ideas Award for being best employer in the state that seeks out and listens to new ideas from employees.
That was an honor that didn’t come over night, but came from years of working to be a different company. There are a lot of ways to “build a better workplace.” We had figured out a lot them over the years even without googling them.
However, how do you create innovation?
Without innovation, life becomes predictable, but it risks becoming stagnant. We end up doing things a certain way because we’ve always done them that way. At Kopis, we think that is dangerous and boring. We like to challenge ourselves to learn new things, to think about things differently and to always looks for a better way.
Sometimes the innovations start at the top, with the leadership team coming up with a way to change something, a different way to apply technology or even a different way to engage with our customers. But often, the most impactful innovations bubble up from the team. At Kopis, we believe there are three key elements that make this culture of innovation possible:
We believe life is gray and even if you think you are doing something right, you should be open to the idea that there might be a better way – perhaps even if it was right, something else has changed that makes it no longer optimal.
We are comfortable testing change – not every decision has to be all or nothing. We can try and fall back. We strongly believe in try something, learn and adjust. That is how you grow.
We are comfortable and encourage decision making even when there is uncertainty – if we wait until the outcome of a change is certain, it is probably too late. Instead of being innovative, we are catching up.
Not every innovative idea works, but 100% of them that are never tried fail to have any impact. This is what worked for us, and could work for your small business as you make the effort to build a better workplace.