Three global enterprise solutions to tackle digital invaders

By Jonathan Hassell

Global business leaders are concerned with digital invaders, specifically disruptive technologies and the potential impact they hold as a main competitor and threat to established enterprises. Here are some global enterprise solutions for leaders who are preparing for digital invaders, including methods by which to identify and deal with these new threats.

Join other global business leaders in redrawing the rules of engagement

According to a recent IBM study, “Redefining Boundaries: Insights from the Global C-suite Study,” “Most CxOs anticipate changing the way their organizations engage with customers. They’re especially interested in creating more digital, individualized experiences.” In this new age, partnering with other organizations is key. As the CIO of a consumer products company in China remarked in the study, “If we work alone, our future growth will be constrained. We need to collaborate with other organizations.” Another global enterprise solution involves changing internal interactions. By decentralizing how decisions are made from within, organizations can move away from a hierarchical review process to a more nimble, employee-enabled sort of structure. According to the study, “[CIOs] realize conventional hierarchical management isn’t appropriate when much of an enterprise’s value lies in the networks it’s formed, rather than the resources it owns. Nor will it work with enemies that are small, nimble and well hidden.”

Be more like a torchbearer and less like a market follower

Some organizations naturally find themselves fending off disruptors left and right. In a marketplace where you have to be a leading innovator, these organizations have developed a thicker skin and more agile reflexes in order to survive. This group, which the study refers to as the “torchbearers,” exhibit industry best revenue growth and profitability, and enjoy a strong reputation for innovation and market leadership.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, the study identifies a group of organizations that are laggards. These enterprises suffer a much lower market profile, according to the CxOs that lead them, and experience less financial success. So what global enterprise solutions has the former group come up with that the latter group has not? According to the report, “Torchbearers are more aware of the risk of being disrupted by new entrants from other industries and of the potential of cognitive computing systems. They’re also more likely to be entering new markets and adopting a more decentralized management style.”

Overall, “Torchbearers are better prepared to recognize and deal with attacks from digital invaders, and they’re deploying some of the same tactics their rivals use. They’re exploring the opportunities in adjacent spaces and stripping out bureaucracy so they can move swiftly.” In other words, this group is poised to strike back and maintain relevance and success in the face of a quickly changing market.

Take over the middle of the market

Perhaps the best global enterprise solution is to be the solution itself. “What do disruptors like Alibaba, eBay, Spotify and WhatsApp have in common?” the study asks. “They’ve each become the linchpin in a virtual network other companies use to reach their customers.” Overall, these disruptors have developed themselves into an ecosystem of transactions and customers such that both ends of the purchase — the buyer and the seller — need the companies themselves. These enterprises are providing true value that cannot be replicated elsewhere, whereas other disruptors cannot easily peel you out of the equation.

Digital invaders are not the force of destruction that some leaders may fear. With the right planning, you can stay ahead of the curve and turn these invaders from a threat to simply an obstacle to be cleared.

Written By

Jonathan Hassell

President, 82 Ventures

Jonathan Hassell runs 82 Ventures, a technical writing and consulting firm based in Charlotte, NC. He centers his focus around network administrator, security, the cloud, and mobile technologies.

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