super sonic darwin

Just fifteen years ago, the iPhone was first launched, faced with ridicule by other moguls, saying that people would never accept a phone without buttons. Today, entire business models and ecosystems are built around iPhones, or any smartphone for that matter.

We evolve quickly. People have started noticing their hands changing. Their pinky fingers now have “dents” to support their devices. Darwin’s finches took two million years. We only took fifteen.

HR is hard. Today’s people insights are obsolete tomorrow. Never stop learning and become skeptical of innovation.

more human

Supermarkets, restaurants, and many other types of businesses invest in employing fewer people in an attempt to optimize their business.

Supermarkets have quick scan checkout systems. Restaurants have QR menus enabling customers to order straight from their mobile. Reducing the waiters to transporting food between the kitchen and the table.

While it makes much sense from the business point of view to optimize, unfortunately, today’s approach is often to replace (costly) humans. Or increase capacity through technology. Resulting in a generic, less personal approach. The days of pleasant chitchat with the friendly cashier who asks about the family are long gone. Obviously, in a large urban context, it’s nearly impossible to maintain. But this isn’t an all-or-nothing issue.

The goal of implementing technology shouldn’t be to replace humans altogether. It should be to clear time so humans can create genuine added value through a customer-centric approach.

lag

“We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten.” That’s what Bill Gates allegedly said.

Looking at technology, the time between invention and commercial success often spans numerous decades. Revolutions, invoked by television, telephone, the internet… took twenty to thirty years to catch on.

The above quote wasn’t quite finished. Bill Gates went on by saying, “don’t let yourself be lulled into inaction.”

There is time. Embrace new technology calmly and craft a strategy around it to execute meticulously.