We live in a competitive world. That competition forces change. It has always forced change. Change is normal.
The question is not whether our organizations will change—that’s a given—but whether we can see this change before it hits us. To put it another way, are we simply rudderless boats being battered by wave after wave? Can we navigate the waters and see the storm coming or are we being battered because we refuse to look?
To answer, we need to understand our landscape, the economic forces at play, the context we operate within, and our situational awareness of this. Simon Wardley examines the level of situational awareness within business, why it matters, and whether we can anticipate and exploit change before it hits us. Is it simply a lack of data, or are we not looking at the right things?
Simon Wardley is a researcher for the Leading Edge Forum focused on the intersection of IT strategy and new technologies. Simon is a seasoned executive who has spent the last 15 years defining future IT strategies for companies in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG), retail, and IT industries—from Canon’s early leadership in the cloud computing space to Ubuntu’s recent dominance as the top cloud operating system. As a geneticist with a love of mathematics and a fascination for economics, Simon has always found himself dealing with complex systems, whether in behavioral patterns, the environmental risks of chemical pollution, developing novel computer systems, or managing companies. He’s a passionate advocate and researcher in the fields of open source, commoditization, innovation, organizational structure, and cybernetics. Simon’s most recent published research, “Clash of the Titans: Can China Dethrone Silicon Valley?” assesses the high-tech challenge from China and what this means to the future of global technology industry competition. His previous research covers topics including the nature of technological and business change over the next 20 years, value chain mapping, strategies for an increasingly open economy, Web 2.0, and a lifecycle approach to cloud computing. Simon is a regular presenter at conferences worldwide and has been voted one of the UK’s top 50 most influential people in IT in Computer Weekly’s 2011 and 2012 polls.
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