I realize that “Talk Like a Pirate Day” is not scheduled until September 19 of this year, but I did enjoy this Business Week article by G. Michael Maddock and Raphael Louis Vitón. They specialize in helping people launch innovative products, services, and business models, and argue that companies need to think more like pirates:
For pirates, survival—let alone victory—depends on the organization’s entrepreneurial spirit and capacity to:
1) Explore itself and its customers objectively
2) Examine the existing hypotheses and assumptions within their current model
3) Create better models for the future
4) Constantly reinvent and enhance elements of business models to keep or capture advantage. To do this, you need to start with a shared language and strategic clarity by making absolutely certain that you’re looking at the same model (the same treasure map, to keep our metaphor going).
Translating this into the wHolistic ChangeSM approach, the key components that need to be addressed to ensure a successful launch of innovation are
- Clearly articulate the business case for change
- Define success – especially in terms of what the future world will look like and how we will measure that we have achieved it
- Plan the change effort by assessing the impact to the people, process, services, and technology, and
- Develop a robust communication plan that pulls this all together.
All I can say to Messrs. Maddock and Vitón is “Aye!” (And, of course, thank you for inspiring us to think about driving change based on a model (piracy) that one might not have associated with creating change in a large corporation.)