Blockchain - Why 'Wait and See' Is a Risky Strategy
Leaders often fail to see the power of a new technology because they are so good at managing their current business model. They are used to assessing technology changes against:
· their client's current expressed needs and desires;
· the existing infrastructure and technical architecture;
· expected gains to the bottom line, usually through traditionally high margins.
These criteria are commonly successfully applied to 'sustaining technologies' which create incremental evolutionary change. They are not good for assessing the business case for 'disruptive technologies'.
Therefore, leaders need to know when a technology is disruptive. To do this they need to ask a series of questions about:
· the presentation of the technology;
· who is adopting it;
· whether it is in their competitive markets, or not.
One of the most imperative technologies for businesses in all sectors right now is Blockchain. Below we identify how ‘Disruptive’ it might be and how it may be harnessed for business.
Three mitigating steps:
1. Decide whether you believe blockchain is a disruptive technology by using the flow chart in the image above
2. Assess the level of threat and examine your own organisation
3. Agree an organisational model that will be effective to harness the new technology
WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU HAVE A DISRUPTIVE TECHNOLOGY ON YOUR HANDS
To solve the dilemma, leaders need to operate:
· with a futuristic frame of reference;
· scan the horizon for small, seemingly insignificant markets;
· shape the future for the good of their clients [even if the clients aren't aware they need to play catch-up];
· know their organisational capabilities, not just resource capabilities;
· be prepared for making the ‘great escape’ and disrupt themselves.
When planning for the great escape, leaders should:
· create a new team and draw new boundaries around them. Seat them together and give them responsibility and accountability;
· appoint a new champion to lead the team;
· ensure personal, attentive oversight from the CEO to free resource and release true potential;
· design the right operating model for them;
We have more on this in our course for executives if you want to know how to choose different designs. If you'd like more information on blockchain and how it will impact your business, please contact us at Marbral Advisory.
BASED ON THE WONDERFUL BOOK 'AN INNOVATOR'S DILEMMA’ BY CLAYTON CHRISTENSEN