Becoming the Platzhirsch isn’t something that happens overnight. What you need to get there is much more than we could include here. We would need to describe every right (and every wrong) decision. Every strategic position, all of our relationships with our customers, and much more. And it still wouldn’t be a guide to becoming the Platzhirsch. What we can offer you, however, is a guide to losing that position.
Step 1: Forget Visions
If you’re having visions, you should probably see a doctor. In order to grow and expand in as many directions as possible, the most important thing to remember is to avoid any kind of corporate vision. At the same time, this will ensure that your staff are focused on the here and now, rather than getting distracted by issues that are not pressing at the moment. No one knows what the future holds. You should do everything in your power to avoid taking any precautions that could turn out to be unnecessary. The clearer and simpler a vision is, the worse.
Step 2: Shoulder All the Responsibility Yourself
Make sure that you take on all the responsibilities and tasks. This way, you can keep an overview of the current status of activities and projects at all times. Moreover, this ensures that every aspect of knowledge management rests in your hands. No meetings to discuss things, no waiting time, no disagreements. Furthermore, this allows you to make sure that your employees always stay within their comfort zones and spares them the tedious process of learning new things. In this way, you can make sure that your employees never get poached.
Step 3: Digitalization Can Wait
Digitalization is coming with all sorts of fanfare. You know what else comes with a great deal of fanfare? A tempest in a teapot. So lean back, observe – and wait. Fully networked production facilities will result in a certain amount of lifelessness and emptiness when they are just chock-full of production equipment and employees are only there to monitor the hustle and bustle. Continuous availability of data and the corresponding increase in efficiency take away all of the surprise with regard to the annual results. Predictability can get monotonous and is exhausting over time. That’s why it’s better to be safe and wait and see whether digitalization and the Internet will prevail, then make your decision.
Step 4: All or Nothing!
Testing demonstrates a lack of confidence. Making small-scale changes means additional work for you because you’ll need to go over all the information again. The lean approach in particular results in systems and processes that are constantly changing. Maybe this makes them better and more efficient, but at the end of the day, stability is what gives us a feeling of security. Constant change will only lead to unrest and increased activity in the company. By the way: The animals in the wild who live the longest are turtles. Slow, steady, and with a refreshing sense of indifference. If you don’t want to be a Platzhirsch, then be sure to follow their example!
Step 5: Savor Your Success
Once you’ve scaled the mountain, it’s time to enjoy the view. Once you’ve won a championship, it’s time to celebrate. Once you’ve graduated, you drink a toast. So it follows that, when a company reaches a major milestone, it’s time to take a step back and observe your accomplishment from a distance. Be proud of your achievement and let others compliment your success. It’s possible that they could use a patronizing tip or two. Be content and rest on your laurels – after all, the market could use the time to gain an advantage. It would be pretty unfair to immediately continue and easily defend your position. After all, we’re not a sports team.
The best part of this five-step plan is that even just one of these steps can have a major impact on your business. And there are countless other steps that can ensure that you successfully forfeit your position as technology leader.
In your opinion, which step is the most important?