If you aren’t disrupting your business model, someone else will – Jim Carroll

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What does it mean to innovate at high velocity?

ewallet-iphone.jpgI was the opening keynote speaker for a major credit union conference. In the room were the CEO’s and Board members for several hundred small to medium sized CU’s. This coming week on Friday, I’ll be the closing keynote speaker for the annual conference of the Texas Credit Union League in Austin. I spend quite a bit of time speaking throughout the financial sector.

One constant is that I always challenge my audience to think about how to become an agile, high velocity, innovation oriented organization. This isn’t simply an organization that has a constant stream of new products : it’s an organization that also responds to all the rapid change that is swirling around it.

From my slide deck, I’m outline that high velocity innovative organizations prepare for:

  • the rapid emergence of new technologies
  • rapid shifts in market fundamentals
  • the rapid emergence of new business models
  • rapid shifts in customer behavior
  • a need for rapid scaling to adapt to this rapidity
  • constant rapid shifts in marketing outreach methods
  • rapidly changing consumer sentiment
  • constant challenges in building and maintaining brand relevance.

Through the week, I’ll post some observations from my slide deck on each of these points, but let’s take the first issue as a starting point.

I’ve long been suggesting that the financial sector is soon going to find a tsunami of change as our iPhones, Blackberries and other mobile technologies become the new form of credit card payment technology.

The New York Times reported on the trend this weekend, in an article, Visa introduces a credit card on a phone.

The rush to “contact-less payment technology” is going to happen, and it’s going to happen faster than most people in the financial sector think. It’s being driven at the speed of Silicon Valley, and some financial institutions — and many many credit unions — are still operating at a far slower pace. As a result, they can often be caught flatfooted by dramatic technological change, and end up having their business model disrupted in a substantial way.

On stage, I challenge this senior level type of audience to realize just how quickly everything around them is changing. In order to be innovative, they need to understand the new technologies that will impact them, and be prepared to ingest them at the rate that the market demands.

That’s a critical form of innovation, and sadly, there continue to be a lot of organizations who aren’t into that reality. That’s why there are so many organizations having me in to talk about how to become an “innovator in the high velocity economy.”

  • 2009 Texas Credit Union League conference
  • Visa introduces a credit card on a phone
  • 2009 Financial & banking innovation awards

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