In the last few weeks, I’ve had several high-level sessions with the CEO and management team of a major construction company, as well as with the senior management team and customers of an organization in the packaging/consumer products industries.
Top of mind for these folks isn’t their Facebook strategy, nor are they focused on thinking about what to do with Web 2.0. They’ve got businesses to run, critical issues that need to be tackled, and strategies to be implemented.
There’s a lot of really cool Web 2.0 stuff going on, and yet from a pure strategic level, I’m coming to realize that there’s a lot of hype with the bathwater. It’s like it’s 1999 all over again!
Here’s what these folks are thinking about:
- an accelerated innovation cycle: how can they ensure that they get to market at the pace demanded in the high velocity economy?
- rapid ingestion of new technologies / methodologies: there’s a constant flood of new stuff they must deal with, particularly as customers, suppliers, and business partners come to expect an ever-more sophisticated information relationship.
- faster time to market: how can they ensure their logistics capabilties, as well as the insight of their sales force, is finely tuned for dealing with shorter product lifecycles?
- rapid re-focusing of resources for opportunity or threat: consider the China issue and quality: there are lots of organizations now scrambling to redeploy staff and resources due to the sudden new focus and challenge that has emerged
- implementing narrow, niche oriented activities to avoid commoditization: how can they step up the value chain in order to avoid the dreaded “compete on price” trap?
- ….a mindset to deal with “high velocity change”: how can they lead their people into a culture that simply, “acts fast”
These are a lot of the themes covered in the upcoming release of Ready, Set, Done: How to Innovate When Faster is the New Fast. We should be going to print within a few weeks.