It’s been written before and by others…
“Today, every business is a software business.”
How to wrap your head around what this could all mean for you and your business is to think in terms of friction instead of technology. When you consider what the driver was behind the successes of Apple, Amazon, Netflix and more recently Uber, the common thread is that they were all able to reduce the friction in getting services or products from the producer to the consumer.
That removal of friction is made of a number of things. Just to name a few :
Ease of access
Easy or even implied acquisition
Getting rid of intermediaries
What is interesting here is that it’s not an all-or-nothing process. Small changes will make an immediate difference. They do not require a complete change of the business model and can be risk free.
In fact, having a well established business could very well be a liability. As always, inertia is the main culprit when you go over the forensics reports covering the downfall of a major industry player. How is it that a company who had the playing field for itself and the financial means to stay ahead got overtaken by three guys in their basement or by another company that was in a totally different vertical?
The dangers are obvious! But many fail to see it. As technologies become commodities, anyone can use them as a kind of magic potion to level the playing field. And because they don’t have a history of inflexible processes and an installed base of intermediaries that just want to protect the status quo, they can move at incredible speeds. In fact, they are not just able to be better than you, they are capable of literally changing the game.
That’s why today everyone is at risk. Reducing the friction between an urge and its satisfaction is what will now drive business. And it is easy to get some traction and buy in from the board. Go at it by changing one small thing at a time and measuring success.
Knowing that your services or products are desired by potential customers, how could you reduce the friction between wanting and having? Don’t think about technology first. Think about what can be removed from the process. Then, let’s see if technology can fill the gap.
Be the revolution!