Due much in part to advancements in technology, the business landscape is changing in scope at an unprecedented rate. The most competitive businesses are the ones who realize what is next for their category… not just for their own industry.

For example, XYZ Shipping Company knows that their primary role is transportation.But because XYZ Ship is strategic and forward-thinking, they understand that transportation isn’t just about freight; it’s about transporting ideas. After pondering the question, “What’s Next?” they choose to buy a web-based communication platform rivaling GoTo Meeting and WebEx… a company that specializes in the transportation of information. An action like this helps ensure that they remain relevant and competitive.

Sometimes the “What’s Next?” question prompts an “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” response. Google bought YouTube, which had surpassed its own search engine prowess. LinkedIn recently bought SlideShare, which expands the internal offerings of the professional social media powerhouse instead of directing users offsite for presentation services.

Borders buried its head in the sand, refusing to embrace the e-reader technology that Amazon emblazoned. Barnes & Noble saw the writing on the virtual wall and made the right decision to invest heavily in technology that was foreign to them; its Nook has kept them afloat. Kodak dug its film feet in the ground while digital cameras passed them by. Even the staunchest of film-using purists have been won over by the ease and flexibility of digital. (Snap a photo of a child under the age of 10, and he or she will immediately ask to see it on the screen; it’s all they’ve known.)

Facebook launched 8 years ago and has 900 million active users around the world. Mark Zuckerberg, now a multi-billionaire, is 27 years old. Things happen fast.

We can ponder these well-known entities and their failures and successes. We can identify the true innovators, the early adapters, the fast followers and the ostriches. My question to you is this: Which are you? What business are you in? I mean, what business are you really in? And where is that business going? What do you need to do in the next 6 months, year, 2 years to ensure that your business will not only survive but thrive in this world of fast-moving technology?

-Clifford A. Bailey
CEO of TechSoft Systems, Inc.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, May 29th, 2012 at 8:00 am and is filed under Business Development. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.