What is all of this digital change for, really? One might make an argument that it ought to make businesses faster: faster to change, faster to seize opportunities, and faster to stave off issues. To effectively do so, businesses need to focus on STAC. That stands for simplification, transparency, accountability, and collaboration. Walk through the steps to undertake with each and the value in doing so.
- The pace of change has never been faster, yet, this is the slowest the change will be from this point forward. That may sound funny, but if you think about it, it's definitely true. Here's an example of how fast the pace of change has gotten. It took automobiles 62 years to reach 50 million users. It took the telephone 50, electricity 46, credit cards 28, and television 22. Fast-forward a bit, and it took the Internet seven years, PayPal five years, Facebook three years, and Twitter two years.
Now there are games such as Fortnite that take a matter of months to reach 50 million users. Many businesses don't have an approach to be as fast as this new reality dictates. Let me offer a few thoughts on how to pick up the pace of your business. Think of the acronym STAC, as the path forward. This stands for Simplification, Transparency, Accountability, and Collaboration. Simplification is the first step toward speed.
Companies tend to be better at building and integrating the new than retiring the old and redundant. By not doing the important work of identifying processes or technologies that are redundant or obsolete, your company will be weighed down by its own complexity. Therefore, it's important to catalog all of your processes and technologies, identify the lifespan of each of those that ought to be retired, while also identifying where you have two or three solutions that do the same thing.
Next, transparency will ensure you reach your destination more quickly. It's important to develop well-articulated strategic plans that highlight where your company is headed for the foreseeable future. It's important to ensure that those plans also connect with the work that your team is doing, so they understand how the projects they are pursuing for example are pushing the company in the direction articulated by the plans. By rendering your plans transparent, everyone will understand the strategy while pushing in the same direction.
It's also important that your organization feels accountable for what it's delivering. The key to accountability is measurement. That which gets measured gets done. It's important to employ metrics broadly to gauge the health of the business and assign people for each of the metrics that are evaluated, so that each of them ultimately is responsible for driving the performance metrics in the right direction. Lastly, it's essential to collaborate more broadly. This means collaborating with colleagues across the traditional disciplines of the organization, as more value is now derived at the intersection of functions like marketing and information technology for example.
It also means collaborating with an ecosystem of partners from strategic vendors to the venture capital community to your peers and other companies to broaden the sources of inspiration that might lead to innovation. It also means collaborating to a greater extent with customers to test ideas and gauge their enthusiasm. By simplifying, rendering your plans transparent, making people more accountable and collaborating more broadly, the number of ideas should increase and the speed to execute upon those ideas should increase as well.
- Explain how accountability and collaboration can be synergistic.
- Recognize limitations when pursuing new ideas in an innovation lab.
- List the five stages of digital maturity.
- Identify the benefit of transparency in strategic thinking.
- Name one focus that would form a good basis for a capability team.