The upcoming year 2020 or simply "twenty-twenty", as many say, seems to have something like a magical touch. Maybe its magic lies in the many opportunities it will provide us. We live in fascinating times of rapid change as part of an unprecedented era of technology and innovation.
Hundreds of millions of people have been pulled out of poverty, benefit from ever-improving medical care, sophisticated communications and transportation services, as well as many other innovative products and services. But there are also different facets of these developments that dampen people's enthusiasm or even create fearful thoughts about the future. Environmental problems and particularly climate change are serious subjects. Some people fear their jobs will be replaced by artificial intelligence or robots sooner or later. Others feel overwhelmed by the enormous amount of sophisticated technology showing up in various ways in our daily lives.
Of course, up-to-date education is of great value. But it's worth remembering that we have seen both: Extremely successful technology entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley who completed their studies at university and those who dropped out. As far as I know, the individuals in both groups have been highly dedicated to learning everything necessary for their business' success. I believe that higher education and education, in general, will become increasingly modularized. Life-long learning is a reality. In the future, people will pick all the learning modules they need or are interested in on their journey through life.
So, it's never too late. Take a look at the latest and promising topics of technology and sciences. Read a book, take a course, or enroll at university for studies. I am aware that the area of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) does not belong to the most popular topics in our society. Much of today's wealth in western nations has been built upon achievements in these fields. Each of these domains is extremely broad and diverse. It provides you the opportunity of finding something that catches your interest and lets you separate yourself from others.
Even if you can't or don't want to dive deep into areas of technology, there are many ways to take advantage of the latest technologies and to create innovations and business success. Maybe you have valuable skills that are complementary to those of typical specialists in technology domains? Perhaps you know how to run a business and recognize that service is more than a word, you are good in sales with in-depth market understanding, you are an excellent communicator and speak languages relevant in specific markets? You might want to partner with one of the geniuses from computer sciences, nanotechnology, or biochemistry, etc.?
In these cases, the ability to recognize business opportunities, complementary skill sets, the ability to collaborate, and the willingness to learn can be keys to success.
There are further options to take advantage of the latest technology innovations. Consider these possibilities:
You can adopt an idea or innovation from another market. We all have seen a steady flow of product and service innovations from North America to Europe over the past decades. For example, you can become a licensing or franchise partner for a promising innovation from overseas. You also might watch out for exciting developments in other parts of the world.
You could electrify or digitalize an existing business, product, or service. Similar to the wave of electrification that swept through the world in recent history, the rush of transforming everything into digital solutions offers vast opportunities. These changes take time. On the one hand, the electrification of railways in central Europe is almost completed. On the other hand, the electrification of cars has just begun. It is similar in terms of the digital wave. Many small or medium service businesses could benefit from online booking applications to handle appointments. You don't need any software development skills to use them. But they are convenient for customers and increase your business' efficiency. Sometimes innovation is that simple.
In other cases, you might want to hire a talented app developer who just uses existing software technology but puts the access point to your business literally on the smartphones of your prospects. It is essential to understand that these types of service innovations create value for customers but are nothing new in terms of technology. Innovation often results from a combination of existing technologies or solutions. In these cases, it is crucial to anticipate trends, understand customer needs, and the problems people are facing. But you neither have to be a developer, nor a genius in technology or science.
Be curious about the world. Watch out for the latest developments in technology and science. Think about a problem you might want to address or imagine ways how to enrich people's lives. Find like-minded people who have complementary skills. Collaborate and create something new with a positive impact on the world. Have success!
I wish you all the best for the year 2020.
Get in touch with me today to discuss your business needs and desires. Let's find out how I can help you and your organization to reach growth, profit, and success through technology innovation. Schedule Your FREE Discovery Call Now.
This article was initially published on thiebus.com.