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Sugath Warnakulasuriya explains how to take the first step in accessing the digital value in an old-school business model.

For leaders of traditional industrial and business service companies operating in eroding markets, the typical daily experience is one of keeping existing customers from leaving, holding onto already scant revenue and margins, and staying alive. Entertaining thoughts of getting lots more new customers or becoming more profitable is a rare luxury amidst constant fear of new digitally native attackers turning the industry on its head, or existing competitors retooling themselves to take away what little of the market is still up for grabs.

If you are a CXO or senior leader of such a company, you already know that the deep and disciplined operating expertise and relationships you’ve built over time are indeed very valuable, but also wonder how you can turbo-charge that with “Silicon Valley magic” so you can become the cool new digital, data-driven kid on the block. At the same time, you are skeptical of the hype around “digital transformation” and suspicious of consultants and vendors pitching proprietary solutions as the way to unlock digital value. All of this can be confounding!

So, what’s the clear-headed, strategic way to get your arms around all of the potential new digital value you could generate if you were to “reimagine” parts of your business, or simply make better use of existing and new data and insights to make smarter decisions on how you operate? How do you know what the right priorities should be, what the key risks are, and what kind of investment and organizational commitment is needed to take on this challenge? 

The very good news is that the first “no regret” step to getting started is actually pretty clear, though surprisingly still a secret for many.

 

Key points include:

  • Diagnoses
  • Value levers
  • Digital opportunities

 

Read the full post, The Very First Step in Unlocking Digital Value in Your Old-School Business, on LinkedIn.

 

 

Sugath Warnakulasuriya shares an article that explores a strategy many companies take to develop a path to profitable growth. 

Many traditional high-share, low-growth companies find themselves in a similar predicament: they’re burdened with large, fragmented account portfolios, likely from inorganic market share binges. They often have hybrid asset bases, widely dispersed points of distribution and sale, large workforces, and complex logistics, all of which make margin growth very difficult. The legacy nature of these businesses also prevent access to accurate and timely customer and operational data, further limiting clear paths to profitable growth.

A few companies have battled this dilemma by rethinking how they operate, with judicious use of inexpensive digital engagement, devices, data analytics and innovation techniques. The typical playbook involves creating new digital customer experiences that introduce convenience and drive use, providing the workforce with mobile tools that make it easier to do their job, and deriving insights from newly collected data to improve operations altogether. With emergence of low-cost IoT, some companies even instrument and connect their distributed assets, opening the flood gates to granular, up-to-date and highly useful data. Bringing it altogether with modern data infrastructure and analytics, and operationalizing key insights paves their way to profitable growth.

 

Key points include:

  • Creating new digital customer experiences
  • Digital dashboards to monitor hidden patterns
  • Connecting distributed assets

 

Read the full article, “Cash Cows with Millions of Udders” and Digital Paths to Profitable Growth, on LinkedIn.