For all the human suffering and economic impact caused by corona, there’s one thing that has just surprised me over and over again these last weeks: companies and professionals just adjust and adjust quickly. Teams and departments that were stuck in old ways of working suddenly have found that it’s entirely possible to work in … Read moreDigitalization accelerated
With the vast majority of white-collar staff in companies currently working from home, the normal ways of managing people are disrupted quite fundamentally. Working closely with people in such a way that you can tell them what to do is much more difficult when you’re not physically in the same place. Similarly, many organizations rely … Read moreFocus on outcomes for cross-functional teams
During multiple meetings this week (online, obviously), the same challenge came up: companies and their customers are extremely poor at precisely defining what the desired outcome is that they’re looking to accomplish. At first blush, every person that I meet claims to know exactly what he or she is looking to achieve, but when push … Read moreWhy you don’t define desired outcome
All of Europe, as well as the rest of the world, is in the throes of the Corona virus and some people I meet are comparing it to the start of one of those apocalyptic movies where the world is going to hell in a hand basket. Of course, nobody can ignore the human suffering … Read moreThis is not the end
One of the well-known struggles of every company I work with is to combine innovation with efficiency-oriented operations. This is the classic problem of ambidexterity: the company needs to deliver on today’s revenue and margins while securing its future. The problem is not that companies aren’t aware of the challenge but that they lack the … Read moreCombining innovation and operation
As part of the research in Software Center, I work with dozens of companies in the software-intensive embedded systems space on a variety of topics. One of these topics is the development of new products. Having worked with online companies, as well as startups, I’ve become indoctrinated with Steve Blank’s ideas and the “lean startup” … Read moreAre you building a minimal viable elephant?
This week, for the umpteenth time, I met a team in the process of putting a new product in the market, telling me that they were so customer centric. What they meant was that during development, they’d talked to a number of potential customers and some of the employees had used prototypes. For those that … Read moreSo, you’re customer centric?
During the last months, I’ve met with several companies that had an interesting common denominator: they were all building a new platform to replace a legacy platform and things weren’t going so well. The legacy platform often is decades old and has functionality in it that’s the result of hundreds of person-years of effort. And … Read moreDon’t build new platforms
Having worked with companies on the use of AI, I’ve noticed an interesting pattern: although most of the attention is spent on algorithms, data storage infrastructure, training and evaluation of applications, the hardest part very often seems to be coming up with a promising concept in the first place. When exploring promising concepts, many start … Read moreFinding your AI business case
During the last weeks, I’ve experienced multiple situations where an organization (industrial or academic) simply doesn’t have a business strategy or a strategy concerning a key area for their business. When probed and questioned on the strategy, I’ve observed at least three types of responses. First, leaders in the company say that there is a … Read moreWhy your strategy fails