One of the lessons of Kodak is that getting really good at what you do can have a severe drawback, especially in our age of rapid change. There is danger in being so good at one thing that you cannot adapt quickly enough to changing environment. In Kodak’s case “quickly enough” was more than ten years.
It is the responsibility of every organization to constantly improvise and innovate just to keep their current position in the market. But remember two key points: First, if you “stick to your knitting” and entirely focused on continuous improvement, you don’t have business strategy – it’s not creating a distinctive competitive advantage. Second, an organization that has ossified around continuous improvement isn’t nimble enough for strategic change. Both are warning signs.
Six key questions to ask yourself:
- How is your industry changing?
- Are you actively looking for trends and inflection points that may change your industry?
- So you have a good way to focus your best minds, with dedicated time, on your future strategy?
- How adaptable is your organization?
- Are you building innovation and change readiness into your organization?
- Have you done a change readiness assessment?