Here’s what you should remember if you’re top notch Chief Executive in the tech industry: stop seeing services as a product feature, extension or add-on. Innovation in tech companies should not be focused on finding new ways to ‘upsell’ your clients who have installed your existing products. In my opinion (based on my experience at strategy boutique Thaesis), you are no longer a technology company. Nor are you a product company. In our services economy, we are all services companies (or I dare to say: out of business within the next 10 years). Don’t be afraid, but you’ve got some work to do. And look on the bright side: there are many more business opportunities in new service models then there are in economies-of-scale based transactional markets.
Yesterday, I had the wonderful opportunity to discuss business model innovation with executives from a number of influential high-tech companies. Each and everyone of them was looking for ways to deliver additional services (mostly through third parties) to their customers. Their major challenges: customer orientation in innovation, establishing relationships and creating multiple touch-points with their customers. Challenges that are hardly facilitated by the high-tech value chain with its focus on efficiency and lean manufacturing. With a little help from the guys at trendwatching.com and the business model canvas from businessmodelgeneration.com, I presented 10 new business models for this decade.
PS. I was invited by the Association for Service Management International (AFSMI) and uploaded my lecture slides the night before on SlideShare. The wonderful crew at SlideShare chose my slidedeck as ‘Top of the Day’. The moment I started presenting it had already been viewed 1000+ times. Now that was a nice opening story for the tech executives in the room ;-)