Another year coming to a close. Gone in a blink. Time is the most precious asset. Here’s our advice for CEO’s to help ensure maximum output for every moment of time and resources invested.
Scale Is Everything
We’ve said it a thousand times before. Think big. Fit the budget to the plan, not the other way around. Everything has become a scale game – from streaming video services, to payment networks, to enterprise software – scale is an enormous competitive advantage.
No Time Like Now
My guess is if we were to survey the CEO’s of every publicly-traded Technology company, one wish they would share in common would be the ability to move faster. The ability to adapt to changes in the marketplace more quickly. That’s a difficult ask. It’s difficult – particularly in a large company – for the organization to turn on a dime, in sync, with complete employee buy-in. Institutional agility is a learned skill that takes time (most good things do).
In the meantime, control what you can. Spend the extra $10 million on a $500 million acquisition if it means closing it in a week or two rather than delay the inevitable by months or years (and $millions!) out of petty ego. Push forward with a new product initiative before having every last scrap of information (make a decision!) The quicker you close the deal, the quicker you start a new product initiative, the faster you can get to the good stuff – making mistakes, learning and scaling! Your customers are waiting. While you hesitate, they are opening offices around the world – expanding in the U.K., Germany, across Central and Western Europe, Latin America, India, Southeast Asia. You are going to be required to expand with them. To translate your software into local languages. To have 24x7x365 customer support. It will only get more difficult as time passes.
Focus on That Which Matters Most
Seems obvious but a number of CEO’s don’t know how to prioritize – to focus resources on that which will move the needle for customers, which in turn drives revenue, valuation etc. My experience is that when Technology CEO’s stumble in this area it is because they do not have a handle on where the industry is headed, on what today’s and tomorrow’s customers value in terms of the service in question and how they wish to consume it. This boils down to a lack of curiosity, a management team that has ceased to learn. Our advice? Stay young. Learn from the young people in your organization.