The Trapped Value Gap
Continual improvements in digital and related technologies are creating value faster than companies, industries and society can absorb it. This is a kind of potential energy called trapped value. Targeting and releasing trapped value is the beginning of a new approach to strategic planning the authors call the “wise pivot.”
The Seven Wrong Turns
Before engaging in a wise pivot, it’s important to understand the mistakes that can stop companies from recognizing and releasing trapped value. The authors call these mistakes the seven wrong turns. They include making the company too lean, creating a capital structure built to fail, losing one’s head, managing to Wall Street, relying on luck, serving regulators rather than customers, and anticipating customers who aren’t likely to show up.
The Seven Winning Strategies
The authors present seven new strategic options with many examples. Some are companies that Accenture has worked with directly. Other examples are from a detailed research study (1,000 companies/12 industries) of the leaders’ winning ways.
The Wise Pivot
Between late 2014 and 2018, Accenture’s market value doubled, reflecting the creation of $50 billion in new value. Given accelerating disruption and the growth of trapped value, transforming companies must pivot, and do so repeatedly in order to evolve from today’s core business to tomorrow’s, and the one after that.
The Old, Now and New
The wise pivot requires integration of strategies, specifically, across three different timeframes or business maturities:
- The old — Transforming the core
- The now — Growing the core
- The new — Scaling new innovations
The Innovation Pivot
A wise innovation pivot requires leaders to review and adjust their portfolios to change the shape, speed, and trajectory of pivots. One of the keys here is to concentrate innovation capabilities under a strong leadership team, with dedicated investment and defined innovation roles and responsibilities. This enables companies to embed innovation into their corporate DNA. Done right, innovation isn’t something they do. It’s something they are.
The Financial Pivot
No company successfully pivots without a massive investment in the new. This requires changing commitments and allocations to capital assets across three levers: fixed assets, working capital, and human skills. Rather than following the money, companies must put it to work creating a brave new future.
The People Pivot
For a successful people pivot, organizations must adjust the way they approach hiring and retaining talent. This includes leadership — the people pivot doesn’t just apply to the “troops.” It includes having the right combination of leaders across all three stages, and being open to contributions from talent sources well outside the confines of executives’ own offices. The wild card here is artificial intelligence (AI). The future is likely to be one in which employees and technology work together in new ways. We’ll still need people, albeit with new, different and constantly-evolving skills.
The proven, effective strategy for reinventing your business in the age of ever-present disruption
Disruption by digital technologies? That's not a new story. But what is new is the "wise pivot," a replicable strategy for harnessing disruption to survive, grow, and be relevant to the future. It's a strategy for perpetual reinvention across the old, now, and new elements of any business.
Rapid recent advances in technology are forcing leaders in every business to rethink long-held beliefs about how to adapt to emerging technologies and new markets. What has become abundantly clear: in the digital age, conventional wisdom about business transformation no longer works, if it ever did.
Based on Accenture's own experience of reinventing itself in the face of disruption, the company's real world client work, and a rigorous two-year study of thousands of businesses across 30 industries, Pivot to the Future reveals methodical and bold moves for finding and releasing new sources of trapped value-unlocked by bridging the gap between what is technologically possible and how technologies are being used. The freed value enables companies to simultaneously reinvent their legacy, and current and new businesses.
Pivot to the Future is for leaders who seek to turn the existential threats of today and tomorrow into sustainable growth, with the courage to understand that a wise pivot strategy is not a one-time event, but a commitment to a future of perpetual reinvention, where one pivot is followed by the next and the next.
Available April 23, 2019 from Hachette Audio as a digital download, and in Print and Ebook from PublicAffairs.
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- PIVOT TO THE FUTURE Intro. by Omar Abbosh, Paul Nunes, Larry Downes. Read by Robert Petkoff - Audio24.22