5 Ways Companies Can Survive Tech Disruption and Become Tech Leaders

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By Dominic Tancredi, Co-Founder & CEO

Moore’s Law is brutal on digital practitioners.

Every 18 months, the entire industry doubles down, in energy storage, performance, computer power and more.

It emerged with personal computers. Again with smartphones. And again with the Internet of Things.

Innovation. Disruption. We expect the power of emergent technologies to offer a new world of opportunity in solution-spaces. We anticipate. Become excited. And exhausted.

Technology can solve problems big and immediate. That’s not up for discussion.

What is up for discussion is how fast your multi-million-dollar technology solution can become outdated. Not outdated in the sense that you’re five versions behind in software patches, but outdated in the sense that your comprehensive technology strategy is no longer practical for your organization or companies.

Here are 5 ways that I think are crucial for companies to not only survive tech disruption but to become a tech leader.

Get expert advice, regularly. Then get moving. Don’t wait for the killer PPT strategy presentation.

Expert advice used to mean that you had to obtain a large strategy budget, call in a consultant (Hello, McKinsey) have them do an analysis and provide recommendations on next steps.

This is still how many companies get their advice.

Now, I’m not saying this is still not a relevant avenue to get advice, but unfortunately, this process can take a long time and by the time you get the advice, not only is it too late, but it’s also not guaranteed to work!

Advice comes in all shapes and sizes: decks, presentations, conferences, webinars, podcasts,  business plans, product roadmaps and more. Knowing is half the battle. Not 10% or a quarter. It’s half. Knowing the future ensures success and prevents the problems encountered in the past.

Think of this advice like fashion advice or financial advice. You have to keep one ear in the market to understand what’s the latest and greatest and what has potential to be a disruptor.

Expert advice gets you the shape of the future.

Know your problem, talk to those in the know, recruit your people, and get moving.

Create a company culture that can innovate across multiple functions.

Got the expert advice and shape of the innovative space? Great.

Get your team and the expert strategists in a room to put together a battle plan and come to an understanding of what the scope needs to be to achieve the solution.

It may be many projects. It could even be a platform. We set up and worked with a digital innovation team that moved laterally across every business unit in the organization, finding gaps in their products, and providing enhancements (either to the product or process) to improve their overall KPI.

Our team’s mandate was to survey the company’s digital ecosystem and operate independently. In their time, we improved the checkout of products, expanded social-media commerce, and reduced time-to-market for a major product by half.

Your product, user experience, and interface designers deserve a seat at the table. Possibly the head. At Dom & Tom, the designers, technical leads, and product analysts meet as one team to coordinate.

Prototypes are your panaceas. Create a “launch and learn” company culture.

“Get to market, fast.”

“Launch. Iterate. Repeat.”

“Move fast. Break things.”

Not only are these the mantras for a 2-person startup, but they are also the mantras of some of the biggest and best companies out there.

Prototypes are nothing new. It’s not like I’m talking about something so different than how things have been done in the past.

The difference is that you must bring prototypes to market. Yes. Prototypes that are tested in real-world environments with real customers.

I’ve seen too many prototypes created, shown in one PowerPoint presentation, and then shelved never to be seen again.

The lessons learned from being tested in the market by real customers will trump any strategy presentation.

Get a taste of the tech buffet to be ahead of the game.

Cloud Systems, Blockchain, AR, VR and Machine Learning.

If you were playing buzzword bingo right now, you would be winning. The cloud is the most played out buzzword of them all, but it also has impacted almost every company around the globe. The earlier you joined the cloud, the faster you were able to move on with your business.

It’s no longer acceptable to wait until a technology has matured AND THEN test it out. By that time, you’re already playing catch up.

Moore’s law doesn’t wait for anyone.

Have a heart-to-heart with your tech debt.

Legacy systems.

They keep companies running every day, but every day that passes is another day these legacy systems slow down true innovation.

Find out which systems are slowing your company down. It could be your internal products or your external solutions.

Have a real conversation with your users, NOT the people buying the products. They are not your end users. Check in with them to see what systems can be improved.

In conclusion:

Tech disruption is kicking ass and taking names. Players in this space are either becoming exhausted or energized. What works now will probably not work in 18 months. You have to respect Moore’s law and practice continuous innovation if you’re looking to take your organization to the next level.

Want to be a tech leader or talk to a tech leader? Contact us today!

Photo by Alex Knight on Unsplash