tech changes

Here is an example of how technology changes consumers and producers.

Back in the day, TV shows were written so that you’d still understand what was going on no matter when you tuned in. If you missed an episode, you missed an episode. One way to help viewers was to have a steady cast that appears in every single episode.

Nowadays, people (binge) watch TV shows. On-demand, whenever it’s convenient. For instance, the Netflix remake of “House of Cards” has characters disappearing, only to make their return eight episodes later. This principle allows for a new layer of complexity. Complexity that challenges the writers even more in their creative processes.

Safe to say, streaming technology altered viewers’ behaviors. This behavior change, in turn, influences producers’ behaviors, only to further alter viewers’ behaviors.

Imagine for a second how technology has influenced employees’ behavior. Hybrid working is here to stay. How does that influence employers? What are some of the principles they should embrace to further engage with their employees?

doctor translator

When you get your blood checked at the doctor, they don’t just forward the lab results. Most of us are laypeople, medically speaking, so we need a couple of things from the doctor.

We need them to translate the results. All these numbers, exotic-sounding terms, and ratios. What do they even mean? Not a whole lot until our doctor interprets the results for us. This number here, dear patient, means your cholesterol is too high. This number indicates you have a vitamin D deficiency.

We need them to guide us on how to improve specific metrics. Once the lab results have been translated, we need them to provide us with actionable advice on how we can improve our situation. Make changes to your diet, or take some supplements, for example.

Businesses looking to hire top talent often use assessments in the process. Those results need to be translated as well, alongside practical advice as to how to improve based on those results.

hostile acquisition

Companies get merged all the time. More often than not, the employees, who are about to be merged, are forced into a rather passive role.

They probably didn’t have a say in the process, to begin with. It’s hard for them to imagine what the new, larger company will feel like. What about the new colleagues and managers? Naturally, some doubts arise.

Mergers typically bring about a wave of people resigning, devaluating the merger from the get-go. Maybe the employees preferred the old, smaller company. They might be uncertain as to what’s expected of them in the new company. Uncertainty doesn’t quite boost employee engagement, au contraire.

Successfully completing a merger is an excellent trigger to re-establish employees’ expectations with regard to their jobs. Merging a small team into a larger company is manageable. Merging a large corporate into an even larger corporate requires tools, models, and frameworks to discuss these expectations, preferably in a scientifically sound way.

on a platter

Usually, my reasoning behind sharing unique insights is as follows.

Easy to copy business models don’t allow for the business owners to share all their know-how. Reason why? With that know-how, everybody can replicate that business model in a matter of days.

On the other hand, a business model that is hard to copy allows the business owners to share their unique insights. Years of development, an expensive production process, or validation trials could make the business model hard to replicate. From that point of view, owners could share their know-how, even evangelize through thought-leadership.

The caveat is as follows. If the party on the other end of the table has virtually unlimited funds and resources, sharing unique insights is always a risk. Regardless of the complexity of the business model and its ease to copy.

it pays not to be the boss

Going into a negotiation, the party at the other end of the table is probably well aware that you’re the boss. This particular situation changes the entire strategical negotiation outlook. Your meeting partners will push and haggle until they reach the desired outcome. Even though nothing prevents the boss from sleeping on it, the dynamic is changed either way.

If you aren’t the boss, your meeting partner(s) know that you don’t have clearance to give the go-ahead either way. They’ll assume that you’ll have to discuss with your superiors. In that case, they would try to cater to your needs as much as possible, hoping you will sell their story for them, internally, the best way you can.

Even as the actual boss or CEO, it can be smart to downplay your role, even obfuscate it. Depending on your company’s corporate governance and structure, there might be a board of directors and even a board of advisers in place. Let your meeting partners know, in due time, that the process for taking this particular decision is designed in such a way that it has to be approved by your board. It makes controlling the dynamic easier.

As the boss, it pays not to be the boss every once in a while.