The field of strategy, as I’m fond of saying, had its intellectual roots in Industrial Economics. That way of thinking suggests two assumptions that I think are often a trap, when used in the wrong situations.
The first assumption is that industries exist. Sure, that’s a useful idea when things are stable and the most significant competitor you face is indeed in your industry. Throw in a few strong entry barriers and away we go! But in more and more situations, entry barriers have come down and the most significant competition you face is either not in your industry or is rethinking how your industry operates (think SpaceX vs. NASA).
The second assumption is that the normal state of things is equilibrium, and that change is the unusual thing. After everything that has gone on from about 2016, and certainly after a tumultuous 2020, I don’t know how we can think that way.
In Case You Missed It
We are running three editions of my week-long Columbia course “Leading Strategic Growth and Change.” The content addresses how you structure for a balance of innovation and the day-to-day, making better choices, transformation, platform strategies and much more. People say it changes their lives and careers! If you’reinterested, check out the 2024 course offerings!
The whole team came to the Thinkers50 conference in November –– what a joy to be back in-person! We talked about AI, climate change, and everything else that makes the future so uncertain, and how to use our influence to make a dent. This year’s event was at a special location, London’s Guildhall. I’m still in the top 10, and my good friend Amy Edmondson claimed the #1 spot for the second time (you can see us in conversation at this link).
In December, I packed my bags and headed to the Drucker Forum in Vienna. The theme for our conversations was “Creative Resilience: Leading in an Age of Discontinuity”, and my panel asked the question “How will management rise to the occasion?”
Consistent high points this fall were my regular Fireside Chats and LinkedIn Live sessions with fellow thought leaders. They are recorded and available for replay on YouTube. Here are convenient links to some recent recordings. Kelly Richmond-Pope on fraudsters and targets. Geoffrey Moore on an update to his framework from “Zone to Win.” Ron Boire and myself talking about discovery driven leadership. And Zeynep Ton on how we can, and why we must, create good jobs.
Head spinning from the return-to-office debate? Why have we totally forgotten that physical proximity matters. One of my most-read Thought Sparks of the year revisits the Allen Curve.
The prognosis for innovation in 2024, guided by the Innovator’s Handbook 2024 launch event.
I got impersonated by an AI bot (and boy did it give some terrible advice!)
I’m loving the new competition between Big Food and Big Pharma in the latest battleground in the $80 billion (about $250 per person in the US) weight loss industry as diabetes drugs like Ozempic are being prescribed for weight loss.
A moving innovation I learned about from a social entrepreneur is an easy, affordable and devastatingly effective idea – digging water retention pits in vulnerable villages in India. Check it out – it’s brilliant.
In the News
Micro, small, and medium enterprises have their own challenges when it comes to driving lasting growth.
In the innovation arms race, leaders need to manage the gap between the business side and technological side of their organizations.
Revisiting Samsung Chairman Lee’s New Management, 30 years on.
Tool of the month: Valize IdeaHUB
This fall we launched the first collection of the Valize Learning Guides! The Customer Insight Tools Collection offers techniques for generating the kind of valuable insights that truly grow businesses.
With hands-on practice and assessments, you can test how well you’ve incorporated the concepts. Check out the first collection now and watch out for more collections in the new year!
Live Virtual demonstrations of our SparcHub Sage program.
SparcHub is software based on my book Discovery Driven Growth that makes it easier to implement the methodology in your organization. You can watch a recorded version of it at this link. The “Sage” version is an affordably priced app ($15/month/user) intended for consultants, small companies and smaller units of large companies to help manage their portfolios – a job that currently gets done by non-integrated spreadsheets, for the most part. We’ll be launching it in February, 2024.
Here’s how to sign up for the sessions:
Wednesday, January 17, 2024 at noon EST.
Registration link: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_GOJESJ1wQPe15xmYt-EJ2A
Wednesday January 31, 2024 at noon EST.
Registration link: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_GH3WHe9UQ0SbhAc9-_5oMw
Wednesday, February 21, 2024 at noon EST.
Registration link: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ay1rQ3NdSoqetOU-Zx9Jcw
Looking forward to 2024
After a 2023 that I can only describe as a year of “wait and see,” I think 2024 is going to be full of momentum. I’m looking forward to learning, sharing ideas and having you join us. There’s a new book in the works, ongoing Thought Sparks, lots of inspiring Fireside Chats and so much more. Have a lovely holiday break, however you spend it, and I’m looking forward to working with you next year.
Get in touch, keep in touch!
I work with organizations to run workshops, provide training and offer ideas. Everything from one-on-one leadership coaching to speaking in really big conference rooms. Think that might be useful? Get in touch!
Valize website: www.valize.com