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UX can make the deal but CX makes a living

UX-serves-CX
When the area of business software rose we have first seen a competition based on functions & features.
That evolved a few years later to a quality and performance battle. At the same time a proper process coverage by corresponding functions became commodity.
In the most recent years the greater business software differentiator was design and even more the holistic user experience.
The new workforce is not accepting boring UIs or complicated badly supported or intransparent software processes.
Why should I accept something in business what I wouldn’t use for private? So my private app and digital experience is shaping my expectations towards user experience in general.
Current user experience is already driving my purchase decision. So you better get it right.
What sounds easy to solve, is often a very intensive process in business.
But the even more interesting question is what’s next?
Watch out for what you see in your private environment. Are you still going to a restaurant, when you call for a table reservation and the service stuff is not being that nice, as they are in hurry or just having a bad day?
Are you going to buy tech in an offline store, if the store layout is complex and skilled staff is hard to find between the shelf?
That definitely influences my current purchase decision. What does that mean?
The next evolutional step is putting the customer experience in focus as new tech drives user experience more and more into the field of commodity. A strong UX is clearly impacting the software industry but not sufficient to serve as a key differentiator for an enterprise.
We’re heading exciting times not just because of tech inventions but also experiencing great customer service and a holistic, sustainable customer interaction.
You need to understand CX as an holistic model that will touch every aspect of your organization.
Are you aware of your customer experience journey?
Where does CX start for a software enterprise?
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What’s next to dematerialize?

dematerialize
We’re heading a future that brings more change in almost every aspect of our life, faster than ever before. Technology dematerializes more than we can imagine in the upcoming years.  This change is massive and often disruptive.
Dealing every day with innovative business topics, I hear people talking about digital transformation. Sometimes I stumble on my own thoughts.
Is it just a hype?
Is it just another bullshit bingo?
I get the impression that everyone who wants to be recognized as innovative, have to use words like digital disruption, digital transformation or Internet of Things. By checking the content, you often enough find nothing new, nothing sensational, nothing unexpected.
But don’t get it wrong, just because more and more people are talking about a topic to surf an innovation wave with „not new“ content, doesn’t mean there isn’t a wave. I see quite a few people and organizations who are connecting the dots and figuring out what’s ahead of us. Looking even closer you’ll see clear prove points that the world is changing massively. You could argue, it all the time did and you are right. But this time, the pace is astonishing.
Just think about the way we communicate today, compared to 15 years ago. You already see autonomous cars driving on real roads. Google alone drove one million miles between October 2016 and May 2017. The best selling article on the most recent amazon prime day was the amazon echo. The International Energy Agency says the electric vehicle market grow by 60% in 2016. Instagram doubled his monthly actives to 700million in just two years. Check this article (https://techcrunch.com/2017/04/26/instagram-700-million-users/) to get more details, on their growth curve.
Did you recognize that technology is dematerializing everything?
Let’s take a clock as example. It started with a sundial (3000 bc), followed by a water clock (1500 bc) and fire clocks or sand glasses to measure a certain timeframe. The greek invented the first clock using water and gear wheels around 300 bc. The first mechanical clocks have been invented in Europe around 1300. In the 17th century the first pocket watch came up. It took another 400 years to develop the first crystal clock followed by the atomic clock. The development of the crystal watch and establishing one at every train station was the end of regional local time.
In the following new technology enabled the creation of a watch so small that it can be worn on a wrist. Further technology improvements enabled a mass market manufactoring. In 1970 the first digital clocks for households became available. The „coordinated universal time“ was first introduced by 1972.
At the beginning of the 21st century, you probably got more and more rid of your wrist watch and replaced it by your mobile. The clock was finally dematerialized by software available for mass markets, highly adopted and free of charge.
In the last few years you see the rise of smart watches, but seriously spoken the intent to buy a smart watch is pretty seldom driven by the need to own a nice looking watch giving you the time.
It’s more a fully fledged computer on your wrist, what leads to another ongoing dematerialization. Currently you see more and more compute power becoming available in the cloud, so the dematerialization of PCs and servers, is on it’s way.
Other examples for dematerialization are music CDs today being replaced by online streaming services, or USB sticks being replaced by cloud based storage.
Do you have more examples of dematerialization? What is next to become dematerialized?
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Prepare for Enterprise

enterprise
In my daily business I get the chance to interact with quite a few interns. Over the course of the last years we took the chance to hire quiet a few of them, right after they finished their study.
But what does it take to start in tech company, right out of the university?
How can you prepare for the challenges thrown at you?
How can you ensure to have the right skills, before you enter the business?
I would love to say, just find the right subject to study and a good university, get good marks and they take care of the rest.
I don’t want to disappoint you, but it’s not that easy. Actually I have to admit, that your university probably teaches you how to code and some business economics.
Do you think that’s all it takes to be successful in the workforce?
Are you watching the trends, how work and the workforce is changing?
Have you noticed that there are a few people out there, that predict the end of working for a corporate as we know it?
Will we really see a major shift to more freelancing?
Ask yourself, what is it that you expect and value most from your work?
If you are a millennial or Gen Z the chance is high you strive for flexibility. You want to shape where you work. You are looking for rewarding experiences.
So the big question is, how to prepare for what you thrive for?
In a fast paced world, it’s no more an issue of getting information, the trick is to filter the most relevant information efficiently.
Do you have a system in place to structure and filter information or create and extend your network?
Are you able to boil all your tasks and thoughts down to the essential 10-20% that really make an impact.
Do you have a vision and clear goals (written down)?
You value feedback, but are you prepared to ask for feedback and deal with it, do you reflect, systematically?
Do you know what it takes to ban distraction and sharpen your focus?
In case you’re still in your study, there’s not so much need to do all these things – the most relevant task is always to learn as much as needed to get the next exam and spend the spear time doing sports or party.
As there’s a high chance, that it’s also not on your official learning schedule, I want you to be aware of these.
Start investigating in these skills. Watch videos, take e-courses or read books to increase your skills and efficiency.
Start thinking ahead, you will see and maybe cause a lot of change in the world over the course of the coming years.
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Enter the Digital Workforce

digital_workforce
Now, everything is changing, with a pace that’s never been seen before and it’s still increasing.
Technology is changing in many different ways, providing new possibilities all over the place with a huge impact on your private life and businesses. By having a closer look, you see that quite often one is forcing the other.
Let’s make it simplistic, just to get an idea how that ties together.
Think about mobile. First it was quite expensive, heavy and uncomfortable to carry. Just companies could afford it and used it to improve the  connectivity of people steering the company. They wanted to increase their speed in decision taking.
Over time it got more and more adapted as everyone wanted to be quick, always connected and in control to stay ahead of their race.
At the same time technology improves and mobiles became smaller, cheaper and by that, more attractive for the masses.
That lead to the need of an improved connectivity as the provider started hunting for consumers and mobile contracts. They wanted to participate on the benefit of the technological improvement to improve their reach and revenue streams.
More and more companies provided mobiles to their employees to increase the speed of collaboration and decision taking even further. At the same time intended or not they are improving the reach to their employees, as they carry the mobile to their home as well – becoming reachable off-hours and on weekends.
That’s when it started to get common to have a mobile, not just for work but also for private convenience.
We all know what followed – Nokia dominated the market, bringing sustainable innovation to their mobiles – Apple disrupted the market with the iPhone and the App Store – and now we watch out for what’s next.
Meanwhile mobile innovations are getting into business focus again, as there are new capabilities (GPS, online access to enterprise data, navigation, …) to improve their processes.
How to make sure you are ready and well prepared for your digital adventure?
First of all you need to understand that things are changing and develop some curiosity to explore why it’s changing and furthermore, why now.
So watch and listen intentionally, be open minded and always reflect your thinking to be able to adapt.
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Competitive Advantage

competitive_advantage
There’s no more such thing as knowing your competitor and have a competitive advantage – as digital disruption comes from anywhere with completely new business models.
The new advantage is about adaption. The question is, what can you do today to ensure your company stays ahead of the competition.
In this fast changing world it’s not the strongest who survives, it’s about quick adaptability. That’s true for organizations as well as for individuals.
There are many facets you have to deal with, to be able to adapt quickly and seamlessly to new realities. Just think about  technologies, system architecture, financing, workspaces, industry 4.0, organizational structures, compensation models, working models. Now you can struggle to decide where to start, but there’s one thing that’s definitely needed and that is a diverse & digital workforce with engaged, fired-up, productive and highly creative employees that know how to deal with the fear to fail and celebrate success.
No matter if you think about it as individual or as organization, think how you can play to that need – and keep in mind it’s not about what you know, it’s about what you do.
What skills do you see going along with digital evolution? Happy to read your thoughts.
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New Industry Definition

industry_def
In my last post I wrote about the pace of change based on an example of the automotive industry. Established car manufacturers have to face a new competition having its origin in the IT industry.
At the same time amazon moved on from an online bookstore, to an online retailer now starting its own physical stores and at the same time using its online store knowledge to build up one of the biggest cloud platforms.
So what does that mean for the definition of the known industries. At least the boarders between industries are more and more blurring.
New Business value spans more and more across the defined industries or can be found in between industries.
Business networks are on its rise. Data ownership is definitely a business advantage or even the business itself.
One thing I’m observing is that more and more companies want to understand what other industries are doing, find out there’s some potential for their own and how to adapt.
As a company you can’t focus anymore on your own industry to stay ahead of your competition. At the same time you have to open your own company to the outside world to build a strong alliance and bundle forces. The rising trend of business networks and their projected value in the coming years is also indicating the importance of having an reliable ecosystem.
Following this trend, industries will lose their relevance in the next years. At the same time business networks are at its rise and will establish a completely new kind of industry definition.
From a scientific point of view it’s closely related to the blue ocean strategy.
Do you already see a blue ocean (new industry definition)?
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