Why Do We Win at Innovation

Why Do We Win at Innovation?

Biggleswade, UK — 20th May 2024 —

Author Andrew Munro

Andrew joined Smith Myers as a Director in 2013 and was appointed to the Board in 2017. He previously led Ultra Electronics, Electronic Warfare Business in Canada.  Other senior roles have included President at M2 Consulting, Vice President Electronic Systems at Allen Vanguard and Vice President of Strategy at Med-Eng Systems.  Prior to entering the Defence and Aerospace Private Sector, Andrew had a full 20+ year operational career in the British Army in Signals Intelligence, Electronic Warfare, Counter Terrorism and Counter IED.

Having recently been awarded the coveted King’s Award for Enterprise, The British Engineering Association Award and the Royal Aeronautical Society Award, all for innovation;  I have been asked “why do we win at innovation?” The answer isn’t simple and it doesn’t happen by accident.  Put succinctly, it is all about our people and culture.

Innovation in Our DNA

From the moment you step into our office, you’ll feel it – the palpable energy of learning, creativity and ingenuity. Not content with the status quo; we’re constantly pushing the boundaries of what’s possible. Focussing our technology expertise on provide real-world solutions to real-world problems.  ARTEMIS is a prime example.  By applying our deep cellular knowledge to the challenging world of Search & Rescue and Disaster Response, we have produced a unique technology that leads to less search and more rescue.

A Culture of Support, Creativity and Free Thinking

The best ideas come from collaboration and open-mindedness. That’s why we’ve fostered a culture where everyone’s voice is heard, every idea is valued and autonomy expected. Our flat organizational structure and lack of a blame culture encourage free thinking, experimentation and enjoyment. Whether it’s a brainstorming session or an informal chat over coffee, a lunch time run or a game of table tennis (our innovative culture doesn’t mean we are not competitive!), innovation thrives in our supportive environment.  Summed up, if you want a top-down formal culture, then we are not the place for you, but if you want to collaborate and innovate then we are definitely the right place!

Investment in Research, Development and Collaboration

Committing resources to research and development allows our organization to stay at the forefront of technological advancements and explore new possibilities.   This investment demonstrates a dedication to innovation and ensures that your products or services remain innovative and competitive. Collaboration with other organizations, research institutions, and experts in the field spark new ideas and lead to innovative solutions. By forming strategic partnerships, we leverage complementary expertise and resources to keep driving our technology forward.

Ownership and Community Involvement

As an employee-owned company, every member of our team has a personal stake in our success. This sense of ownership drives everyone to go above and beyond, ensuring that every project is executed with excellence. Beyond the workplace, we’re active members of our local community, giving back and making a positive impact wherever we can. By fostering a sense of ownership and responsibility, we’ve created a team that’s passionate about driving change – both within our company and beyond.

Maintaining a Family Business Ethos

Despite our growth and success, we’ve managed to maintain the close-knit feel of a family business. We prioritise relationships and open communication, ensuring that every team member feels valued and supported. Our focus on employee well-being and job satisfaction ensures that our team is happy, motivated, and ready to tackle any challenge that comes our way. And this carries over to our customer relationships.  Everyone at Smith Myers enjoys giving our customers the best care and attention possible.

Continuous Innovation and Customer-Centric

We’re not content with resting on our laurels. Instead, we’re constantly striving to innovate and improve. By staying close to our customers and anticipating their needs, we’re able to deliver solutions that truly make a difference. Our commitment to customer-centricity drives everything we do, ensuring that we’re always one step ahead of the competition. Always seeking honest feedback from our customers and piers on our performance.

Leadership Support and Vision

Leaders who prioritise innovation and provide the necessary resources and support empower their teams to push boundaries and achieve breakthroughs.

So, innovation isn’t just something we do – it’s who we are. From our supportive culture to our commitment to employee ownership, collaboration and community involvement, innovation is ingrained in every aspect of our people and our culture.  Not prepared to rest on our laurels, we look forward to the next challenge and turning it into an opportunity for both our people and customers. Perhaps that will involve you?