Digitization 2.0

In my previous two blog posts I shared a base view and two examples. In this post I will share some ways to get to a state of the art level of digitization in your business.

As stated in the previous blog post, computerization or digitization 1.0 started in the 1960’s. With rare exceptions, most businesses are fully computerized. Computers, smartphones, Internet and the corresponding software are simply the underlying infrastructure for digitization. In my follow on blog post, Digitization is a mindset,  I described the effects based on the two examples: Amazon and Uber.

Find out your degree of digitization

The degree of digitization today, can also be seen as a collection of individual and unique competitive advantages. If you like to further explore full digitization of your business you may want to use the following guidance:

  1. Think in degrees of digitization?
    – Digitization is not a have or not have. It is a sliding scale from basic to medium, to good, to excellent
    – Can you identify the degree of digitization in your business?
    – Do you have a customer advisory board you can work with to increase the level of digitization?
  2. Modern Business Culture?
    – Digitization is a mindset and requires a modern, open minded and transparent company culture.
    – Do you have an executive team or business owners who don’t want more transparency and rather keep everything close to their chest?
    – Do you have an old style sales and marketing culture that prefers to deliver information only on request and see it as a special value rather than an obligation to freely provide it such as pricing etc.
  3. What is your logistics integration look like
    – Do you still need to manually enter orders, requests or anything else?
    – Are your customer and business partners able to access any record of their transactions online?
    – Can your customers see the order or return progress at any time online
    – Can your customers access business history with you online?
    – Are there any rewards systems for customer activities?
  4. How deep is your sales channel all the way to the individual consumer integrated in your digital presence?
    – Are your direct customers, business partners, vendors, supplier all the way to the individual end user of your products or services fully integrated in your digital presence?
    – Can any of your customer access their own data easily in your system, maybe change their names, email addresses etc? Can they see the products they have and the services they can acquire?
    – Do your customers have access to all the manuals, service descriptions, pricing, spare parts etc.?
    – Do you have a customer community where your customers can meet and exchange experiences?
    – Do you know if your final end consumer is interested in finding out more information from you?
    – Do you have any form of relationship escalation between the end consumer, sales channels, yourself and maybe suppliers of yours?
    – Are customer rewarded when they mention you online on public networks?
  5. What services, knowledge and information can you provide completely paperless?
    – What is the degree of paperless information flow from brochures, to orders, invoices, or contracts?
    – Do you still require a hand written signature on any document?
  6. How many technological channels do you support today?
    Is all the information available on classic websites, do you support mobile devices, do you have dedicated mobile apps, is information exchange possible via social media?

Competitive Advantage

Each and every act of digitization 2.0 should be considered a unique and individual competitive advantage. If it is not a competitive advantage it is probably just a regular digitization 1.0 measure to run your operation.

Obviously the above are only some samples of obvious digitization measures to increase your degree of digitization and creating unique competitive advantages. True so called “disruptive moments” in your business model, network effects and other topics are rather individual to your specific business case.

Innovation development – a global race

The global race for more innovation is rapidly accelerating – still it is lead by California. Even the east coast states like NY, Massachusetts or other US states including Texas or Florida are still looking at California when it comes to top innovation. And Europe as a whole is far back and so are most of the Asian countries.

Asia the manufacturing powerhouse – not yet the innovation driver

Clearly Asia is on the run for the pole position in the world when it comes to mass manufacturing. Yet, Japan, who was actually the first Asian country with huge manufacturing power, shows a state of saturation, high prosperity and therefor high salary and its competitiveness in production leadership is slowing down. Other Asian countries have a high potential for becoming leading production farms to serve and support the growing population on earth – and with that potential a high potential for more production revenue a high potential for growing prosperity.

Strategic tech innovation still come from the US

However – in the past 30 years – it appeared that the manufacturing power is a very different economic value compared to innovation power. And while Germany, Switzerland, and France boost some of the most innovative technologies outside the US, with their “hidden champions” – it is the US who dominates the global technology space with the most relevant innovations. Relevant meaning technology that if it would be taken away would have a serious impact on the global economy.

Large corporations can’t disrupt themselves

All too often people hope that large corporations can just create an “innovation lab” in order to create innovative ideas – very much like a startup – and bring them to market. But in almost all cases that dream is bursting like a bubble after the innovation was created. When running a 20,000+ people company, each and every employee must run on 90% or better performance in order to be economically viable. If only a few would start experimenting with crazy ideas, the whole corporation me get in trouble. And if an “external” innovation lab brings a new solution into the company, the executive team quickly realizes that the sales organization has no resources to create a market or sell the product into the existing customer base, marketing has no capacity to bring new products to market, support teams are at 110% load and so forth. Corporate innovation is bound to the very same principles like a young startup: permanently under funded, lacking resources, trouble to get initial traction,  difficulties building a brand and a sales force and so forth. Corporations must create very different methods and values to actually make a corporate innovation lab successful.

Government Innovation Programs

Government innovation programs have evolved and we see a huge amount of innovative solutions in many countries. However most of those innovative solutions don’t make it. Billions are pored into startups and great ideas, yet they did not return the investment. An innovation in itself is of zero value. Only of the innovation is successfully brought to market and considered a value for the customer, it begins to create a value for the owner, the participating employees and partners and the economy. Yet, a local product is never bringing a major contribution to the national prosperity. But if the product goes global, the national  contribution to prosperity begins to flow. A country that is self sufficient is probably healthy and OK but never very prosper. A country with a high export rate however creates prosperity from the excess production value. A country with a high export rate from genuine and highly innovative products is the most prosper way for economic growth.

Innovation Economics – We Need To Understand

Here is probably the most interesting aspect of the innovation economics: If 5 countries are highly innovative and 10 countries not, obviously the five countries are much richer than the 10. And in the old thinking of competition, we try to be better (more innovative) then the other countries. But if all 15 countries are highly innovative, all 15 countries are rich and the five countries are richer by serving 15 rich countries than serving only 4 other rich countries and 10 poor countries. Yes, the delta is less and less but the overall economic power grows. Once we accept that model, we no longer keep countries poor or keep people dumb. Instead we keep competing but on a smaller difference. Formula-1 race cars are extremely fast and the winner wins often by a margin of a split second. Unlike 50 years ago where we saw minutes in between – simply because everything was a secret. In Silicon valley we have a spirit of sharing – even the “secret” strategies. Simply because we learned that sharing, openness and transparency is the biggest accelerator of all.

 

 

Five major initiatives for increasing national innovation

Society3 created five major initiatives to increase local innovation power and connect it to a global network to drive a global business:

1) Global Exchange
A global network where people are permanently connected. The exchange / community platform provides users instant access to all members via web, mobile and other services. The objective is to get answer on questions within a few minutes or hours, find new business partners around the globe, compare notes, and open sharing for ultra fast learning from each other.

2) Events & Meetings
While a digital global exchange is the only way to get people from around the world to collaborate and learn from each other fast, people need the personal face to face exchange too. Therefor Society3 and their local representatives conduct national entrepreneurs night events to meet and exchange on a national level and the World Innovations Forum to get together at least once a year on a global level.

3) Innovation Education & Acceleration
Education and acceleration through the accelerator program that we are currently preparing to be delivered online so everybody can participate and soon offline in the countries at local accelerators. Unique about the accelerator is the “knowledge and methods to train what it really takes to create a unique and innovative solution, build a disruptive business model, and bring it to global markets within very fast”. Society3 was named one of the top 100 most influential global accelerators.

4) Global Trading Platform
A new blockchain based trading platform will allow startups and young innovative businesses – even old ones – offer and sell their goods globally at a fraction of today’s cost – but most importantly bridging the gap from a conventional local business to a global business. Lacking the skills and bandwidth to go global is the most significant gap to today’s Silicon Valley’s leadership position.

5) Government & Corporate Innovation Labs Support
Governments and Corporations in over 100 countries are undertaking enormous initiatives to increase their innovation power. At least in the past 20 to 30 years no significant innovation stood out compared to Silicon Valley, which was an orchard just 70 years ago. The Society3 Group developed a methodical approach to accelerate significant innovation development within the respective country. Here the same techniques are applied as in the accelerator program: “Knowledge and methods what it really takes to create a unique and innovative solution, building disruptive businesses, and bring solutions to global markets within a very short period of time”.

Purpose for a global innovation push

Beyond the self serving objective to drive more business as a corporate or country, there is an additional purpose for the global innovation push. In order to eradicate hunger, poverty, and inequality, we as the human race, may want to drive “equality in prosperity” across the globe by creating innovation, entrepreneurship and business development from within the countries rather than external aid. And as a bonus we will see a wave of new innovation from all these different cultures.

 

Call for Volunteers globally

World Innovations Forum and Society3 is expanding its volunteers network – globally. Society3 volunteers help bring more prosperity equality to the world by helping countries to create prosperity from within rather than aid from the outside.

Society3 Group AG is a global innovation and entrepreneurs network with representation in 26 countries – and counting. The organization provides a global exchange for innovative minds such as entrepreneurs, corporate innovation labs, investors, mentors, incubators, accelerators and innovation officers at governments. It provides a platform for all innovation stakeholder to connect globally and locally, online and offline, and rapidly improving business success rate across the globe.

The Society3 founders team, who lived 20 years in the Valley, decided to take it to a new level and create a digital version for the digital natives. The objective is to double the innovation success rate by 2035 and amplify prosperity in all nations.

We think big, no problem is too complex, no solution too bold, and no idea too crazy. If we can think it, we can create it. We are here to help entrepreneurs make the impossible a reality, for the benefit of all of us.

MAJOR INITIATIVES

1) WORLD INNOVATIONS FORUM 2018

The annual World Innovations Forum event, is held across 3 days this June 12-14, 2018, taking place in Zürich, featuring 20+ countries and international startups and welcoming over 200 guests.

What we are looking for:

· Volunteers available for the event dates June 12 – 14 and for set up on June 11, 2018

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Set Up (setting up the event space, staging, design, backstage etc.)
  • Entry ( tickets, guest greeting and orientation)
  • Info team (helping attendees to find what they are looking for)
  • Monitoring Event Space (cleaning, organizing)
  • Photographer / Videographer (taking clips and pictures from every situation)
  • Security (watch doors and other important points of access)
  • Universal support for whatever it takes to make the event an amazing experience
  • Tear Down (Removing stages and cleaning up the event space)

You will meet amazing entrepreneurs, investors and innovation enablers from around the world. You will get a unique insight into the world of startups, innovation, entrepreneurship and investments. And it will certainly be a lot of fun too.

We are providing free volunteers training ahead of the task.

You will be listed (unless you don’t want to) as “Innovation Advocate at the World Innovations Forum and Society3“. Feel free to use that title in your CV and on your LinkedIn profile as a volunteer’s position. After a year of support, you will receive a certificate.

Please email us at volunteers at society3 com share what you are interested in and what intrigued you to join.

 

2) NATIONAL ENTREPRENEURS NIGHTS (GLOBALLY)

We are organizing entrepreneurs nights in 26 countries, where entrepreneurs, investors and innovation enabler meet on a regular base. Events are currently held or planned in Albania, Argentina, Australia, Bangladesh, China, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Macedonia, Nepal, Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tunisia, Turkey, United States, and Vietnam.

What we are looking for:

Volunteers helping us for 2-3 hours with

  • Set Up (setting up the event space, staging, design, etc.)
  • Entry (guest greeting and orientation)
  • Info team (helping attendees to find what they are looking for)
  • Photographer / Videographer (taking clips and pictures from every situation)
  • Universal support for whatever it takes to make the event an amazing experience

We are providing free volunteers training via an online conference call.

You will be listed (unless you don’t want to) as “Innovation Advocate at the World Innovations Forum and Society3“. Feel free to use that title in your CV and on your LinkedIn profile as a volunteers position. After a year of support, you will receive a certificate.

Please email us at volunteers at society3 com share what you are interested in and what intrigued you to join.

 

3) SOCIAL MEDIA SUPPORT (GLOBALLY)

We are engaged to help young entrepreneurs to give them more visibility on a global scale. To do so we aggregate their latest news and share them in all the countries where we are active in. To support these activities we are looking for supporter who can share content about innovations and engagements in certain technology fields in the respective countries. We are looking for volunteers in Albania, Argentina, Australia, Bangladesh, China, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Macedonia, Nepal, Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tunisia, United States, Turkey, and Vietnam.

What we are looking for:

Volunteers who have a good online network of open minded people
helping us maybe 30 minutes a week

  • Sharing content that we are sharing in the respective country.
  • Providing feedback on the content and its reception in the country
  • Responding to comments or requesting us or the respective startup to comment
  • Never share content that you don’t understand or you don’t like to support

We are providing free social media training to prepare you for the task.

You will be listed (unless you don’t want to) as “Innovation Advocate at the World Innovations Forum and Society3“. Feel free to use that title in your CV and on your LinkedIn profile as a volunteers position. After a year of support, you will receive a certificate.

Please email us at volunteers at society3 com share what you are interested in and what intrigued you to join.

 

We look forward to hearing from you,

 

Innovation Vietnam, rapidly growing

We have been in Hanoi, Vietnam, from March 7 to 9, 2018 to learn about Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Vietnam. The Society3 and World Innovations Forum Ambassador, Nguyễn Dũng from BKHoldings, Hanoi’s top Accelerator and Co-working space prepared two packed days with insights about Vietnam and a startup event in Hanoi. The two main cities, Hanoi and Ho Chi Min city compete for attention and leadership in a great way. Vietnamese are very competitive people and power worker.

Innovation in Vietnam

Vietnam is on the forefront of innovation in the areas of AI, Blockchain, Crypto currencies and other areas based on the Russian Education System. Vietnamese universities create great mathematicians and scientists who in turn work on the above mentioned topics. Our Innovation & Entrepreneurs event was having a gigantic 7 meter LED display. No more projector needed.

Co-Working & Acceleration in Vietnam

BKHoldings Co-Working Space is certainly a leading example of a highly comfortable, yet very accessible space for young entrepreneurs to work in. But here is not only a work space but also an accelerator, helping young entrepreneurs to be prepared to go after the business quickly and avoid unnecessary mistakes. It’s owner, a young entrepreneur himself created that space in a way that everybody can easily communicate with each other and still has a very professional appearance. And talking about communication: It’s worth mentioning that all startups, investors as well as representatives from universities or government spoke fluently English. It appears that there is a clear understanding that if one will want to do business on a global level has to speak the global language. We noticed that first in Bangkok then in Nepal – English is the universal communication vehicle.

Vietnam will be represented at the upcoming World innovations Forum in Switzerland as one of the highly innovative countries in the world. We will share some more insights in the Vietnamese Startup World and some top startups from several industry segments.

 

Do you know Nepal? No you don’t. Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal

Most people associate Nepal with Himalaya, Yak, Temples and Monks. And that’s OK – but that was 20+ years ago. Kathmandu, the capital city is a 6 to 8 Million people mega city. The Universities produce entrepreneurs and scientists and the management schools develop top candidates. And the Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal is on the rise.

Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal, Khem Lakai, Society3 and World Innovations Forum AmbassadorWe have been invited to Kathmandu Nepal, from March 4 to 6, 2018 to learn about Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Nepal and share entrepreneurs experiences from around the world. The Society3 and World Innovations Forum Ambassador, Khem Lakai (Photo) made this three very impressive days for us.  Marita and I learned a lot about this extremely friendly culture which has to offer a lot more than Mountains and tracks – even though it is a breath taking experience being so close to the tallest mountains in the world.

Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal

We saw some very interesting startups in all kinds of fields from Medicine to technology and data management. And prior to the event that was organized by our Ambassador For Nepal, Khem Lakai we had a chance to meet leaders from the university, government, and industry on the campus of the Global Management Academy in Kathmandu.

Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal at Academy For Management Kathmandu

At the Event “Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal” we talked about the need to connect entrepreneurs from all countries to learn from each other, inspire each other and possibly create business partnerships across the globe.

Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal with Axel Schultze, Society3 at Nepal Entrepreneurs Night

In many countries, including Nepal, there is a huge interest in connecting with the rest of the world to learn what is needed, what problems need to be solved and how young entrepreneurs can share experiences from technology issues to business model development or fundraising challenges.

 

During the Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal, Marita Schultze addressed several points that are continuously discussed with female entrepreneurs such as the work/family balance, the perceived differences and why female entrepreneurs should not adopt to a male behavior but instead understand their advantages as a woman. “No need to copy a male entrepreneur’s behavior – put your uniqueness in the foreground instead”.

Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal with Marita Schultze, Society3 at Nepal Entrepreneurs Night

Female entrepreneurship is not just something Nepal will do but already has several years experience of engaged female entrepreneurs.

Podiums Discussion,Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal, Society3 at Nepal Entrepreneurs Night

The podiums discussion only emphasized what we already recognized: Nepal is on the verge to become another highly agile country in Asia that has to be watched and taken serious as one of the most potential innovation countries in the world. Clearly Nepal will be represented at the upcoming World innovations Forum in Switzerland and added to the list of the highly innovation countries in the world.

 

And last but not least, Mount Everest is an absolute must see, letting all innovations behind for a moment and meditate about the wonders of that world.

Entrepreneurial Wave Nepal and Mount Everest

Flying along side the Himalaya Mountain Ridge having Mount Everest straight in front of us.

In the next few weeks we will introduce some of the Nepali Entrepreneurs and what they do. Interestingly enough some actually come already from other countries to start their opportunity here in Nepal. One of them is Tirza Theunissen. but we will talk about her and her amazing project in a dedicated post.