Category Archives: Big Impact

No one remembers the footnotes

Recently, I attended a strategic governance meeting with a client, in which the joint teams presented the status of a critical program being reviewed by execs from both sides. The best practice which I have seen to work well happens when both teams co-own and work together to deliver the expected outcome. There is no us and them. What matters are the results and expected benefits to the ultimate end customers, and everything else must align to meet those objectives. Critical programs will have many twists, turns and dependencies, and require a high intensity to bring all of them together.

In that meeting, one of the important aspects for the critical program presented had a deliverable date marked with an (*). This was later explained in the document as being dependent on the availability of some key resources from the client and some dependencies on a third party. It was amazing to observe the response to the (*)… There was none! There were absolutely no responses or comments on the (*) or the dependencies whatsoever. It was clearly expected that the teams would be able to deal with the situation and find alternative means, should any issues arise, so as to not impact the final deliverables and timelines. The key discussions were focused to ensure that all were aligned to achieving the final result. The main activities and dependencies were discussed and actioned out. No one looked at the (*) and footnotes.

We have all come across (*) and footnotes: points written at the bottom of reports, contracts, presentations, etc. which no one remembers. We have all signed loan documents, mortgage contracts, etc. which have so many fine points, but do we remember them? Do we even bother to read or care about them? All we know and remember are the big bold points – the interest rates, principal amounts, duration and maybe one or two other key clauses. Also, what the discussions are mostly about is certainly not about what is written with (*) or in the footnotes. No one remembers the footnotes; no one remembers what the (*) marks. Other than legal notes, disclaimers or attributing key references, the (*) and footnotes have no relevance in a business discussion context. Do they?

Business and Leadership are similar in nature. No one remembers the fine print, the (*) and footnotes. Everyone is aligned to achieving the common objectives, the big bold moves, why the end results should happen, why the program should succeed, how to make a difference, what the big picture is, etc. At the end, that is what makes a winning team, that is what makes a winner – as they focus on big bold moves rather than worrying about the fine print or (*) contingencies. No one remembers the footnotes.

Six Key Tenets of Awesome Teams

One of the questions I am often asked is what makes an awesome team? Over the years of working with global teams across industries and service lines, I think there are certainly a few key tenets which Awesome teams possess. They have a method to them, and the best in class teams diligently work towards achieving excellence through a set of formal and informal processes day in and day out. The following aspects clearly stand out on what I think make these teams awesome… Read more

Digitalization: the time to speed up is now

The unstoppable digitalization of enterprises is happening all around us. Businesses are being reinvented, rejuvenated or being freshly built by a new set of tools, technologies and ecosystem integration to leverage the digital advantage. Clearly, going digital is an irreversible trend and businesses are investing heavily to stay relevant. Digital has moved beyond strategy discussions in the boardroom, to roadmap and implementation in order to bring unique customer experiences to the front-end and drive better efficiencies at the back-end. Read more

Digital vs. Physical – what’s the right balance?

The ever increasing digitization around us has created interesting conundrums for various industries. Many business segments have become digital dominant, such as media, telecom, etc. Many others, such as retail, financial services, manufacturing, etc. are in the process of transformation to find the right balance between digital and physical to complement each other. The potential business impact through digital is extremely high and irrespective of the industry, it is important for all businesses to have a strong and committed digital strategy to leverage growth, drive increased efficiencies and deliver enriched customer experiences. Read more

It’s not just the data but what you can do with it that will define the winners.

Data is important. However, even more important is the critical Analytics which the data drives. Information needs to enable decision making, either through rules-based/automated decisions, or by people taking decisions based on the analytics presented to them. It is not only the zettabyte of data captured which matters, but what is done with it that defines success or failure.

IoT is gaining significant momentum. As per Cisco, 250 things will connect every second by 2020: that means 7.9 billion things will connect in 2020 alone! Read more