Join Dean DeBiase and Author & CEO at OutThinker, Kaihan Krippendorff – Strategy and Innovation Speaker, business strategist, keynote speaker, former McKinsey consultant, and author of four business strategy books, for a discussion about Rebooting Companies: The new challenges in technology and strategy.

I invited my colleague, best-selling author and CEO of OutThinker, Kaihan Krippendorff, on The Reboot Chronicles to explore what’s next in corporate innovation and how organizations can do a better job adapting to and creating the future.

As Rob Wolcott, Kaihan and I say, innovation and disruption are worn-out buzzwords with fix-it processes that do not always deliver significant results. But now, amidst a global pandemic, companies are faced with significant disruptive events and need help adapting and even evaluating the core principles they operate under. As a fellow author, I was intrigued by Kaihan’s latest book Driving Innovation from Within about addressing business myths head on and enabling people. Though I tend to cultivate growth with more innovation-outside principles, by co-creating new products, services and ventures through partnerships and pushing large enterprises to “Dance with Startups”, Kaihan’s “from Within” strategy is needed now more than ever, as CEO’s look to streamline and move faster.


Pandemic Rebooting Plan

We unpacked a dozen issues in this episode, but I thought viewers would be very interested in a white paper he and his team developed, with a simple process to reboot organizations, business models and growth. It has been adopted to focus on what you can do now in this tough global environment, here is an excerpt to get you started:

  1. Imagine (30 mins): Think through potential future scenarios.
  2. Dissect (30 mins): Break business model down to assess which parts to change.
  3. Expand (90 mins): Expand your strategic options by ideating potential strategies.
  4. Analyze (60 mins): Assess and prioritize your options.

IMAGINE: COVID-19 has introduced such uncertainty into our businesses that traditional strategic visioning techniques are often irrelevant. As futurist Amy Webb advises, we cannot predict the future, but we can put our companies into a state of readiness. By thinking through potential future scenarios, you and your team can shift from a state of fear to one of curiosity and determination.

DISSECT: The next step is to think expansively about how your business model may be impacted. There is a tendency to focus myopically on just a few elements of your business model (e.g., just product or how to deliver the product). But often opportunities and threats emerge in unexpected areas.

It helps to think through eight areas we call the 8Ps – positioning, product, pricing, placement, promotion, processes, physical experience, and people – and ask yourself if you need to consider new approaches for each area. I will add proximity!

EXPAND: Having dissected your business model, it’s now time to brainstorm new business model innovations and strategies you might consider. We work with a set of 36 strategic patterns that help people ideate creative, new strategies. For each strategic pattern, brainstorm as many ideas as you can for how to apply the pattern to your business.

ANALYZE: The final step is to analyze and select which of the strategic options you generated you will prioritize. In normal times, a strategy’s primary function is to create clarity and direction. In times of great uncertainty, your strategy’s goal should be to create readiness and options.

Identify a few number of priorities you are reasonably confident in, and a handful of potential “pivots” you are planting the seeds of that could bear fruit depending on how the environment evolves. Assess each idea’s level of ease and impact on your business. This will give you four types of ideas, as outlined in the white paper.

Lastly, pick a set of priorities to pursue now. Those priorities are your strategy.


Reflection Time

2020 is a good time for reflection, to rethink strategies, reboot and innovative. Kaihan says that it is okay to not always have a clear solution to what one’s strategy is but to have the right assets and capabilities so you can turn on your strategy once clarity sets in.

We covered a lot of ground, you can watch here or tune in wherever you listen to podcasts.

About The Reboot Chronicles Podcast: Hosted by Dean DeBiase, The Reboot Chronicles is a popular no-holds-barred podcast on iHeart Radio, iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcasts and YouTube that has been bringing together CEOs, entrepreneurs, authors, and global leaders, for over a decade, to discuss how organizations are rebooting their leadership-competitiveness of everything from growth, innovation, and technology to talent, culture, and governance. Tune in wherever you listen to podcasts or at https://www.revieve.com/rebootchronicles

Named a “Growth Guru” by Inc. Magazine, Dean DeBiase is a Faculty Member at Kellogg School of Management and Silicon Valley serial CEO, where he has served in chief executive and chairman roles of more than a dozen emerging growth companies, CEO of Fortune 500 subsidiaries, and a director on public, private, family-enterprise, CVC, PE and VC boards. He is a Technology Fellow at Northwestern University, a Board Leadership Fellow at The National Association of Corporate Directors, and an Advisor to the National Science Foundation. A Forbes Contributor and co-author of the best-selling book The Big Moo, Dean is working on his next book, Dancing with Startups. Connect with Dean here: www.linkedin.com/in/FollowDean

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