By Florian Krueger, Partner & COO
This is more for the business folks out there. But, if you are a technology leader you may want to support your business team by putting on a metaphorical money hat and looking at things not only from a “shiny new things are sexy”-perspective, but also from a “which customer related problem am I actually solving?”-perspective.
1. Don’t start if you don’t have your overall strategy
Including data strategy and all other disruptive tech strategies – firmly under control. You need to get the right data into the system to make sure you are creating a solid experiment. If you then want to show a path to a production system, you need to have a precise idea about all the other moving parts (People, Processes, Projects, Objectives, Capabilities, Legacy Infrastructure, GRC requirements and legal aspects). You can only automate and improve what you fully understand AND where you manage that change properly… Pareto works here as well, of course.
2. You can’t do cheap, fast and good
This wisdom is valid here as well. Pick two, and tell your board the reasons why. You need to set the right expectations from the get-go, meaning this is a journey into the unknown, potentially replacing your entire operating models with experimental ideas, which are still in flight. In a day and age where it takes a typical Fortune500 company several years to standardise on ERP systems, how do you replace big chunks of your IT and how do you make sure that people won’t become frustrated. We are nearing the top of the first cycle of the Dunning-Kruger curve. There will be a lot of blood, sweat and tears before everything will work. Say that. Yes, you can also say that this (DLT) is 100% the future, but be honest about the pain that will be inflicted.
The Dunning-Kruger Effect
Of course you say. Simple rules. We are always keeping it simple, stupid. Now, consortia are ubercool, but are they a viable approach for a first pilot? No way. Getting one company to agree what is what is already a complete nightmare. Try and throw another 20 in the mix and you have the stuff that creates mini-strokes just thinking about it. You need to go about the selection of good ideas by a) simplicity and b) business value. I’ve developed a matrix model to define simplicity, quantify value and qualify viability of DLT use cases. Ask me, if you want to know how I do it. I’m happy to share this privately (it needs a bit of explaining).
Do not plan any of that in the same old, same old waterfall fashion. Things are moving at lightning speed right now and whilst 2017 is the year to explore, in 2018 we will see the leading companies successfully productionise DLT on a global level. You do not have the luxury to wait until others have failed, you need to earn your own stripes. Therefore be agile, be bold, be brave and you know what? Have fun! You are at the heart of a revolution. (If you are still reading that is ;-))