Posts Tagged ‘innovation labs’

Monday’s Musings: Understand The Four Organizational Personas Of Disruptive Tech Adoption

Pace of Innovation Exceeds Ability To Consume

Rapid innovation, flexible deployment options, and easy consumption models create favorable conditions for the proliferation of disruptive technology.  In fact, convergence in the five pillars of enterprise disruption (i.e. social, mobile, cloud, big data, and unified communications), has led to new innovations and opportunities to apply disruptive technologies to new business models.  New business models abound at the intersection of cloud and big data, social and mobile, social and unified communications, and cloud and mobile.

Unfortunately, most organizations are awash with discovering, evaluating, and consuming disruptive technologies.  Despite IT budgets going down from 3 to 5% year over year, technology spending is up 18 to 20%.  Why?  Amidst constrained budgets, resources, and time limits, executives are willing to invest in disruptive technology to improve business outcomes.  Consequently, successful adoption is the key challenge in consuming this torrent of innovation.  This rapid pace of change and inability to consume innovation detract organizations from the realization of business value.

Organizations Fall Into Four Personas Of  Disruptive Technology Adoption

A common truism in the industry is “Culture trumps technology”.  As organizations apply methodologies such as Constellation’s DEEPR Framework in improving adoption, leaders must first determine which of the four personas best fits their organization’s appetite for consuming and innovating with disruptive technologies.

The personas of disruptive technology adoption assess organizational culture in two key axes (see Figure 1).  The first is how incremental or transformational an organization looks at applying disruptive technology to business models.  The second assesses how proactive or reactive an organization is in carrying out new initiatives.  Based on these dimensions, the four personas include:

  1. Market leaders. Market leaders prefer to drive transformational innovation.  They look at technologies as enablers in disrupting business models.  They see competitive differentiation in delivering outcomes to customers. Market leaders accept failure as part of the innovation process.  They fail fast and move on.
  2. Fast followers. Fast followers prefer to react to the success of market leaders and their experiments.  When they sense success, they tend to jump in.  Fast followers do not like to fail and rapidly apply lessons learned from market leaders into their road maps.  Fast followers tend to deliver scale in the markets as a counter balance to arriving later in the market.
  3. Cautious adopters. Cautious adopters proactively deliver incremental innovation.  They tend to take a more measured approach and spend more time studying how they can improve an existing success than creating a transformational change.  Cautious adopters often come from regulated industries where security and safety are paramount objectives.
  4. Laggards. Laggards tend to procrastinate on applying innovations to their business models.  They prefer not be bothered by trends and will only react when the trends have moved beyond mainstream.  They see value in waiting as prices will drop over time as success rates increase over time.  Laggards enjoy waiting.

During the interviews and discussions with the 2012 Constellation SuperNova award participants, key questions emerged in the decision process on whether to adopt or pass on a disruptive technologies.  These questions aligned well with the four personas of disruptive technology adoption.

Figure 1.  Organizations Should Understand Which Persona Of Disruptive Tech Adoption Describes Them Best


Personal Log: Altimeter Group – Helping Organizations Bridge The Technology Obsolescence Gap

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Emerging Technologies Alter The Approach To Enterprise Strategies
The proliferation of and access to emerging technologies by the business user challenges organizations to rethink their enterprise technology strategy.  Consumer technologies have proven to be not only more innovative and collaborative, but also quite accessible and equally reliable when compared to existing enterprise tools.  The result – IT departments no longer reign supreme in determining technology strategy and adoption.  In fact, business leaders and individuals increasingly play a greater, if not decisive, role in driving the selection and cultural adoption of technology.  Consequently, enterprise strategies must be crafted to manage disparate systems, technologies, and deployment options across the organization.

… But The Rate of Technology Obsolescence Outpaces The Pace Of Technology Adoption

Organizations face massive levels of change across challenging macro-economic conditions, emerging workplace dynamics, new business models, and slow pace of technology adoption.  Unfortunately, they must respond to these changes while being saddled with the burdens of last century’s technology.  Without actionable application strategies in the transition to social enterprise apps, many organizations face obsolescence.  How do we get from where we are today to where we want to be?

Enterprise Strategies Must Begin With The End In Mind
To take a Coveyism, its important to define the objectives before you begin.  As the enterprise strategist at Altimeter I’ll be assisting our clients with:

  • Adopting technology strategies driven by business need;
  • Building dynamic user experiences;
  • Crafting strategies to transform business processes;
  • Delivering a connected community; and
  • Eliminating burdensome cost structures to fund innovation

These advisory projects will include but not be limited to:

  • Technology strategy reviews
  • Vendor selection
  • Independent verification and validation (IV&V)
  • Vendor management strategies

Succeed With A Holistic Approach Beyond Just Enterprise Strategy

As I assist our clients with these enterprise strategies, its important to think of these in the context of a holistic approach (see Figure 1).  Your organization’s overall strategy should also address the challenges and success strategies in leadership, customer, and innovation required for success.  I’ll be joined by 3 other partners including our founding partner, Charlene Li, who will focus on the culture and structures required to guide these emerging technologies in the organization.  Deb Schultz, a pioneer in bringing innovation concepts to life, will be leading our labs program at “The Hangar”. Meanwhile, my former Forrester colleague, Jeremiah Owyang will be focusing on customer strategy of emerging technologies.

Figure 1. Altimeter Group’s Four Practice Areas

Join The Altimeter Open House Webinar On The Future of Business
Find out more about how the Altimeter Group can serve as your resource at our upcoming Open House Webinar.  Details below:

Date:                           Thursday, September 10th, 2009
Time:                          10 am Pacific Time (GMT – 8:00)
Registration link:

Related blog posts:

Your POV

What are your top concerns about your enterprise strategy?  Will you have the tools to get from today’s enterprise technologies to an emerging world of Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0 business solutions.  Let us know what you think.  Post your comment here or reach me direct at r at altimetergroup dot com or r at softwareinsider dot org.

Copyright © 2009 R Wang. All rights reserved.