Innovative thinking can touch any area of your enterprise, not just new products or creative marketing. Here's a great example of innovative thinking at work in a retail expansion strategy.
TD Bank wants to expand in the eastern US, and has decided to snap up old burger and chicken outlets and convert them to bank branches.
Great idea both for customers and for the bank. These kinds of locations are usually ideally situated on major streets and intersections, and almost always have abundant parking. Fast food places often have a lot of windows above table-top level, which is exactly what you need in a bank -- a bright location that doesn't show below the desktop level.
An added bonus will be that many locations will be set up for drive-through access, something that can take a lot of time to get through zoning.
For the neighborhoods involved, a bank branch is usually considered an upgrade from whatever commercial enterprise was there before. In some cases, I suspect that these conversions will support the local micro-economy, because the food places may be sitting empty now because of the recession.
So it looks like a win-win all around both for the shareholders and the communities. Nice innovative thinking.Resources:
TD cooks up burger joint plan for new U.S. outlets, by Grant Robertson. Globe and Mail June 17, 2010
Full disclosure: I own shares in the parent company.But this isn't investment advice, so who really cares?