I spend my time these days with the CEO's of a huge range of global organizations. I'm working with them when I'm pulling together my keynote for an association or leadership conference, or when I'm leading a management off-site. It's a remarkable opportunity, because I'm witnessing first hand what some senior executives are thinking as they pursue strategies which will pull them out of this economic downturn. For the news headlines of economic terrorism: today's economy is all about opportunity.
The new, next economy.
I'm witnessing organizations have a razor like focus on several key areas.What are they focused on?
- Mastering fast markets: they're immersed in a world in which product innovations occur so fast that that "time to market" is now measured in weeks rather than years.
- Product innovation: They're busy ensuring that they have a continual pipeline of new products or services that will generate new revenue as old revenue is displaced.
- Dealing with disruptive technology: They're dealing with the fact that a furious pace of technological innovation continues unabated, with the rapid emergence of new technologies that change entire industries: what happens, for example, when our cell phones and smart phones become the credit card infrastructure of the future?
- Customer engagement: They are involved in rapidly changing the method by which they engage with their customer base and re-energizing their brand, knowing that consumer mindset has become increasingly difficult to capture as the relentless march of social networking technologies continues unabated.
- Business model innovation: They are busy innovating with business models, knowing that the only certainty for future success is uncertainty. Consider Wizzit, a South African bank that is based entirely upon the exchange of text messages. That business model disruption right there!
Given all this turmoil, there's plenty of opportunity for strategies which are opportunistic in nature -- and that's some of what I'll focus upon when I visit Halifax next week. I look forward to returning to the old home town!
Jim will be speaking at the Greater Halifax Partnership's Building Our Future event on Tuesday, November 24th at noon. The topic will be about Game Changers: Transformative Trends to 2020. Click on the icon below to read more about the event or to register.
Jim Carroll is a Futurist, Trends and Innovation expert. He is a Halifax native; a graduate of Halifax West High School and Dalhousie University. He has gone on to establish a global career providing high level strategic advice on future trends and innovation and was recently named by Business Week as one of four leading sources for insight into innovation issues.