Is your strategy Cyclope or Argus? One single eye to rely on, versus a diversity of eyes providing the gift of prophecy.
Strategy is an enlightened way to watch, analyze, choose, launch and make your future happen. Strategy is not just about maximizing your immediate probability of success. It can be about changing the rules of the game to disorientate your competitors but not your users. Today, you have an infinity of possible choices ahead of you. And we have good news for you: collective intelligence is the only analytical way to safely follow a surprising direction. Your round table of experts will be delighted by the surprise and the depth analysis of your crowd(s). Groups of collaborators, local and global experts of your entities, communities, and globally all employees aggregated together, will allow you to see better. Weak signals, surprising and fine conditions of success, legitimacy of your brand on new markets, unexpected uses and ways of paying, deployment hot points, market adoption conditions, and among all… expectations of your targets and people. Your vision and strategy will indeed have to be not only strong, but also desired and shared.
I dare to say that some CAC40 companies are experiencing right now, for the first time, this point of no return constituted by the positive challenges raised by their 100 000 collaborators through massive collective intelligence. I dare to affirm that they will operate a major switch in the following 3 months, EDF is doing it now for instance, or they will start a 3 year battle fighting against their own staff. And if you are not using massive collective intelligence yet and constantly, you will simply keep living the Cold war with your own people, the live force of your company. To feel what these Top Executives are living, first consider that your company is being watched by every single of your employee, client and user, and that you owe them “sense making” and a never-seen-before level of accuracy in the offers you push and ways you interact with them. That is a fact, and you can’t do anything about that other than use it as a personal and collective opportunity. Imagine that thousands of employees together give you decision-making keys and on-the-shelf projects to embody your new dynamics now and in time. Real and desirable pieces of vision. Real and desired projects to have impact on your core and side businesses, to launch enthusiastic and communicable actions now. What would you do? You would probably start assessing, assembling and give life to the whole right away. Strategy being about enlightening business, using your crowds to enrich your vision, prioritize your choices and launch accurate actions becomes simply what we call “a Must Do”.
I also dare to say that if you struggle understanding your thousands of collaborators, it is a red strategic KPI. It does not necessarily mean you are doing things wrong, but it means your guys are trying to alert you on some major elements you have not yet sufficiently considered. It simply means you are blind on a non anecdotic number of directions your company could (should?) take. A concrete example? By launching its 2030 visioning consultation open to their 150.000 employees, one of our clients has discovered +30% of new trends at world level in… less than 4 weeks. And this includes the diversity of points of view, stakes and concepts linked to these trends. they are declinated by regions, functions. How valuable is that? Your appreciation. They post-rationalized and renamed their approach “augmented and shared visioning”. They consider it a requirement by these troubled and uncertain times clashing all sectors. They also believe that it is the way for them to have a strategic plan, which will by nature be built as a coherent, crowd-based, declination of a global mega-trend centered vision. The plus? There will be no delay between vision and action because they have already started launching projects along the way.
I dare to say that, maybe against your own or your directing peers’ belief, your company is ready for this. It is time for your company to maximize the intelligence of its strategy and decisions. The strategic choices will always be up to you. Which criteria will you use? On which possible and studied scenarii or options? This is precisely what the crow will bring: other possible and desired options, and ways of appreciating your possibilities. One last Machiavelli argument: every single employee and client of your company will adore you if you are the one who leads this open dynamics.
If you now feel like the Cyclope talking to the Oracle when you talk “strategy” with your round table of experts, just realize that YOU have thousands of eyes closed on your head. You can simply open them to become Argus… now.