If you’re doing the same old thing, you’re losing, you just haven’t realised it yet.
Perhaps that is a little harsh, but it’s not far from the truth.
We are in the midst of a Technological Revolution. There is no question about that, it’s happening all around us. Everywhere you look innovation on a spectacular scale is taking place. Whether it be Tesla’s speed pods, the internet and it’s never ending spread or futuristic, virtual reality goggles. We are living the revolution.
Vive la révolution.
But what does that mean in the business world, or even in our own individual worlds?
Just as when the industrial revolution was underway, this is a moment of huge opportunity. Yet, in the same breath it is also a time of significant risk, nobody wants to be marked as a Luddite.
In the 1920s large companies tended to stick around for around sixty years, now, it’s averaging at 15. Exciting.
Business is a dog eat dog world and if you fall behind, nobody is going to stop and help you along. OK, maybe the government (if you’re large enough), but you’re unlikely to recover to where you were before.
So how do you make the most of this accident of birth?
The answer to that is fairly simple, in principle. You constantly educate yourself, you spend hours learning and ensuring that you are in fact ahead of the game. All in the hope that you understand the difference between the good and the bad and you can make the most of the numerous opportunities that will inevitably cross your path.
Reed Hastings, CEO of Netflix, has argued in the past that change is gradual but on occasion something huge will appear and then is the time to move quickly. Something he did in his about turn from a Blockbuster style model to the world’s leading streaming service. Encouragingly, these kind of opportunities are more frequent at the moment.
That being said, if you have missed the streaming opportunity, what do you do when two similar opportunities are put in front of you, how do you know which is the win and which is the dud? This is a question that any VC will have spent hours and hours considering.
It’s not easy to answer either, but I would say this.
Don’t let yourself get stuck in the norm. Don’t settle for average, don’t settle instinctively for what your neighbour or competitor has. Take your time to consider what is coming next, what the future is and where you should invest your money.
It may be shares into a brand new potash mine, it could be that you think Tesla is the future, it could be at work when you are analysing where you can make savings. Whatever it is, don’t just settle for the status quo.
Look for that opportunity that will help you grow and enhance your success through this wonderfully volatile and exciting era of technological change.
One debate we have been having in the office recently is whether or not companies are making a mistake in limiting their buying to established names. When in fact they could be considering the expertise of companies that are more niche, in the sense that they solve one particular problem and they do it well.
Perhaps it’s worth considering at your end, just because something is an established brand name that offers everything you can imagine, it doesn’t mean that that offering is of a high quality throughout.
Food for thought.
And with that I must leave you and return to planning to establish HICX as a leading brand name. After all people buy on that alone, don’t they?
Happily BAE, AutoNation, EDF, Newmark Grubb Knight Frank, Randstad and co don’t think that way, size isn’t everything, expertise and the best solution is. Are they the ones leading the way in this Technological Revolution?