Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Change is changing faster!

I would like to share with you some fascinating ideas that I came across as I watched the thoughtful, envisioning, and inspiring presentation by business thinker Gary Hamel, Reinventing Management for the 21st Century. His forward looking vision, and the passionate way in which he explains what he believes to be the daunting challenges facing organizations in the twenty first century prompted me to write this post. I have made some of his ideas mine and I hope you will do the same.

According to Hamel, we are the first generation in history that has to cope with an accelerating rate of change. The number of internet connections, the capability to store data, the number of mobile phones connected to web, CO2 emissions, among others; are all dramatically changing characteristics of today’s landscape that directly condition the way in which businesses are run. Change is changing faster!

In this unstable and hyper-competitive context, barriers, and competitive advantages are being eroded constantly. Companies are left in a bare knuckle fight to defend its profit margins, with innovation, creativity and adaptability being their only reliable tools to succeed.   

Moreover, in our Information Society, the speed with which knowledge is exchanged through different communication channels, the abundance of consultants benchmarking companies and transferring knowledge from one company to another, among many other reasons, have made it extremely difficult to gain sustainable competitive advantages through knowledge. Knowledge has become a commodity. Nowadays everything is much less about how much or what you know, and it is more about how fast you can create new knowledge.

In essence, the successful company of the 21st century needs to change as fast as change itself and innovation must be the work of everybody, all the time, every day. Knowledge needs to flourish constantly.

The web, which is a defining factor of our times, has some very specific core values embedded. The web is adaptable and collaborative. It praises openness, meritocracy and flexibility. Every twenty first century company must embrace those values.

Hamel Capped off his presentation by stating that the successful corporations of the 21st century will be humane above all things. Humans are adaptable and enormously resilient by nature. Humans have essential qualities that organizations usually lack.

I kindly invite you to watch the presentation. As a corporation with a clear mission to innovate and design new solutions to help governments become more efficient, there are a lot of ideas we could apply to make Smartmatic even more successful.
Ernesto Parisca