What matters to winning in business is increasingly not size or speed. It is momentum – the two combined. How can you move a big organisation at speed?
Any excuse to see the great Jonah Lomu again…..look at him going over the line after breaking three tackles. You feel that he could make it over the line even with the whole English team hanging on to his legs.
Jonah Lomu personified momentum. He weighed 120 kg and was 1.96 metres tall, but could run 100 metres in 10.8 seconds. Engineers know momentum equals speed times mass.
The same equation applies to business. Size used to matter more than speed, but digital economics have been decreasing the advantages of economies of scale, in media, in R&D, in IT, in product development and especially in distribution. The same digital economics have made speed more important, with customer needs, competitors, products, markets technology and channels changing more rapidly that ever.
The winning formula is now momentum – being able to change at scale and speed.
This is hard – historically size reduces speed as communication become harder and changes have to be rolled out and planned. Tomorrows winners, like Facebook, Amazon and Tencent are able to execute fast despite their huge size. What characterises organisations that create momentum?
Alignment of your people. If you have to negotiate everything and conduct “change management” every time you change course, you will never. Instead, your people are united behind common value and direction, enabling large numbers of people to move fast.
Digital organisation. Software can change instantly around the globe. Hardware/People changes take planning, time and cost to roll out. The more your organisation runs digitally, the more you too can break the trade-off between size and speed.
Rather than focusing on the products of tomorrow, far-seeing organisations will focus on building the organisation of tomorrow. How can you become Jonah Lomu?