5 proactive steps to take in order to promote a culture of innovation through technology

a.      The market is changing so fast, so rapidly, that it is hard to stay on top of all the changes. Ask vendors to come and explain their new products to you on a regular basis
b.     Or, if you are short of time, ask one of the top consultancy firms to present a summary to you
c.      Even without these you may find public resources looking at ‘top trends’ in technology useful, for example, those from McKinsey & Company titled “The top trends in tech”
d.     Run regular customer insight sessions in the form of surveys or roundtables to understand what their views are on technology, and research their opinions and views.

2)     DISCUSS:
a.      Consider holding technology related Board meetings, Strategy Committees, or even monthly meetings with your Executive team dedicated to discussing the latest technology, and how it could be applied across the company.
b.     Make it everyone’s responsibility to consider new technology. This is not only the Chief Technology Officer’s domain, we are all responsible. If you are holding discussions with the Board or Executive Committee, consider having the discussion led by a colleague who is not from the IT team
c.      Visit and participate in trade events and conferences around innovative technologies. Begin to build your brand as an innovative, technology first company

3)     PARTNER:
a.      You may choose to partner with third-parties, from the technology industry, to explore if there are new products or services you could offer jointly. For example, Renault Group, the automotive maker, has partnered with LG Electronics in order to offer their electric car drivers an intelligent infotainment service from their dashboard – coming to new vehicles in 2022
b.     Partner with a consulting firm or technology company to undertake a deep dive, a root and branch review of your business.

a.      Experiments are often more important than expertise and you can build an environment where experiments with technology can be undertaken. Take an ‘incubator’ approach, and reduce your enterprise risk. Scale what works
b.     Give your teams time to innovate and try new ideas. Of course, the most famous example of a company giving their employees time to work on other projects is Google – and their 20% time, where employees are encouraged to work on projects outside of the scope of their daily work.

5)     RECRUIT:
a.      Recruit technology acumen to your Board of Directors. This is an important step, ensuring you have senior leadership which has a track record and understanding of new technology to support your teams. A Deloitte study found that high-performing S&P 500 companies were more likely (31%) to have tech-savy Board members than lower-performing companies (just 17%)

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