Author: Shraddha Patil, CEO, Success Route Consulting Services
I lead a weekly discussion series on industry and market trends in the Learning and Development Group (www.learning-development.com). Learning and Development Group is the largest community (https://www.facebook.com/groups/cop.learning.development) of L&D professionals in the world . This discussion series I lead for this community is called SATURDAY BIZ. This series features a topic related to the business world every week. The best minds in the industry participate in this discussion series. I feel privileged and honoured to lead such an elite series in social media.
In one of the recent discussions, I introduced the topic ‘Disruptive Change’. Let me a give a little context here on the topic. Today’s market leader is out of business tomorrow. Alibaba emerged from nowhere and overtook the combined revenues of Amazon and EBay. WhatSapp, a 55 employee company was bought by Facebook for a whopping 23 Billion USD. The rise of Micromax in the mobile phone space, the fall of Nokia and Blackberry, the extinction of Kodak camera are results of these disruptive changes in the industry. What should organizations do about these disruptive changes happening in the industry? What should they do to stay alive and stay ahead of the curve? What are the key lessons for organizations today?
Once I announced the topic in the weekly series, it triggered an intriguing discussion. Below I have shared a summary of the key insights shared by the members on the topic. I have organized these insights into seven measures organizations can undertake. I am sure, these seven measures, if truly implemented would make organizations more resilient and would go a long way in shaping their future:-
Organisations should be anticipating about future changes and be as adaptive as possible. Jim Collins in his book “Good to Great” says, Staying Alive and Staying Ahead is all about MBA: “Managing By Anticipation”. The key is to continuously imagine what unexpected things can occur, what new trends may emerge and what passions people may have in future.
New ideation and new thought is important as per the need of time. Reinventing, Reengineering, Restoring, Revisiting, Re-strategizing are the key. Imagination feeds your confidence to face the Unknown and Unborn Future! We don’t just face, but we create the future. Leaders should start recognizing and rewarding innovation everywhere so that they can get people talking about it. Innovation need not only be from and by the top level management. Sometimes a better innovation might come from lower levels as well. So involve employees in decision making about products that go with higher sales in the market that come with innovations as an integral part. Others will follow the curve!
3. BE SWIFT
It is not enough to innovate and invent. It is essential to innovate, invent and go to the market quickly. Hindustan Aeronautics Limited in India took 30 years to develop the indigenous Aircraft, TEJAS which is a 3rd generation aircraft. But by then, the fifth generation Aircrafts had started ruling over the sky. Today, some organizations are designing, developing and launching products at lighting speed. Your organizations cannot afford to be a laggard.
4. BE SENSITIVE
Leaders must become truthful and sensitive towards all their active and inactive stakeholders – customers, shareholders, employees, competitors and others. Like in a society your neighbour may not impact your life style or development. But if your neighbours are not good enough then your development is colourless. There are many such examples like CSR activities by organizations. But it is important to note that charity begins at home. It’s basically the social architecture of any organization that contributes to its success when it comes to standing and sustaining the dynamics of the industry and marketplace as a whole. There is a thin line between revenues and margins. It’s up to the leaders how they want to play. Will they pass on the benefits to employees and customers?
5. GIVE UP COMPLACENCY
Market leaders are becoming complacent in their current success. They don’t keep researching. They forget the mantra ‘the only thing that doesn’t change is change’. Leaders can’t look at their past success and stop working for newer things. All of us need to constantly evolve or perish. The complacent team bites the dust and past laurels are no guarantee to success.
6. KEEP PACE WITH TECHNOLOGY
Today technology drives technology. Imagine, before five years to manufacture a complex part, it used to take almost one month. Now you just draw the part and your 3D manufacturing will print it to real. Today robots are designed to do complex operations. There are unmanned vehicles , doctorless surgeries, Drones etc. Technologies around Cloud, Big Data, Mobile are changing the way companies engage with their customers and do business.
7. KEEP LEARNING
Organizations that learn faster than competition stay ahead and get ahead. Former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of General Electric, Jack Welch puts it very aptly: “An organization’s ability to learn, and translate that learning into action rapidly, is the ultimate competitive advantage.” This statement by the visionary leader accentuates the fact that only learning organizations can face the disruptive market forces head on.
These seven measures are priceless. One of the members in the discussion mentioned about Nicholas Nassim Tayib’s reference to anti-fragility or resilience as a quality that is developed in some organisations as a culture. This culture enables a certain amount of freedom in experimenting with new things – that too informally, but which can lead to new product ideas sooner or later.
This edition of SATURDAY BIZ indeed was enlightening and filled with great insights. I hope that you would find this summary beneficial too. Do share your feedback with me on: firstname.lastname@example.org