Nine key strategies for going beyond the big
To enter a new, more turbulent era of social tension, economic nationalism, and technological revolution, you need to go beyond the great. Big is no longer good enough.
In Beyond Great, three Boston Consulting Group partners – Arindam Bhattacharya, Nickolaus Lang, and Jim Hemerling – make the point that when the concept of business excellence is reinvented, it is no longer good enough to be great to be successful.
There are three fundamental forces that are changing the nature of global corporations. First, the interrelated tension created by “the deterioration in the burden on our natural ecosystem and the growing dissatisfaction with capitalism and the inequality that results”. Second is “the increasing economic nationalism and the continuing erosion of US hegemony”. And third is “a technological revolution driven by the exponential growth of global data and digital technologies”.
With this in mind, they offer a new standard of performance defined by nine key strategies in three areas: growth, operations and organization.
Grow Beyond: Redefine what great growth looks like
Strategy 1: Do good, grow beyond that
Rather than viewing the social impact as an activity outside of the core, reimagine core operations to achieve societal impact, and therefore long-term, sustainable total returns for shareholders. Companies that can carefully integrate the good into their strategies and processes achieve consistently high shareholder returns and have a positive effect on all stakeholders.
Strategy 2: stream, don’t send
Offer compelling digital solutions and experiences, not just physical products or services. Today’s leading companies take complete responsibility for customer results and experiences. With the help of digital technologies, they go deep into the usage lifecycle in order to meet unmet requirements, either by transferring new solutions to physical products and services or by completely replacing physical products and services.
Strategy 3: Refine Your Global Game
Grow selectively (that is, where you can claim profitable market share) and in a manner that is appropriate for the local environment, not all at once. Leading companies use asset-light, digital or e-commerce-centric business models to open up new markets and expand quickly. They also become more selective about which markets to enter and, paradoxically, deepen their reintegration into the markets they have chosen.
Beyond Operating: Rethink the way your businesses work
Strategy 4: Develop an ecosystem
In addition to traditional supply chains, many global companies are forming digital ecosystems as new age value networks to create and deliver the solutions, results, and experiences customers crave. But as leading companies are discovering, some ecosystems work better than others.
Strategy # 5: Flex The Way You Do It
Invest in high-tech, multi-local factories and delivery centers that, when combined with cost-effective features, can quickly deliver bespoke quotations. In addition to low costs, today’s deployment models must also be fast, responsive and resistant to disruptions.
Strategy # 6: let the data cycle
Build a global data architecture and analytics to underpin the other eight strategies. Leading companies view global data as the valuable fuel that not only predicts future performance or consumer behavior, but also leads to profitable value propositions.
Organize beyond: Constantly reinventing the organization of the company
Strategy # 7: Focus, Fast, and Shallow
Move away from the traditional matrix organizational model in favor of agile, customer-oriented teams supported by platform functions. Bureaucracy and distance to customers are death in times of volatility – and today’s leaders know it.
Strategy # 8: Thrive With Talent
Acquire, train, inspire and empower a digitally savvy, engaged workforce. Companies today have to take a closer look at what a new generation of employees wants and needs. They need to fundamentally change the way they find, inspire and develop the 21st century workforce.
Strategy # 9: embrace the always-on transformation
Embrace constant transformation instead of traditional one-off change initiatives. This strategy is critical to success with the other eight. To compete and win in a volatile, rapidly evolving business environment, global companies must be able to continuously perform multiple transformations.
Each chapter closes with advice for managers and a helpful section on key takeaways. What all of these demands place on a leader is in line with what you will find elsewhere on this website: Leading with conviction, being open-minded, promoting and embedding a continuous learning mentality, embracing transformative leadership, and developing the ability to navigate through ambiguity , Tension and paradox.
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Posted by Michael McKinney at 9:18 am
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