The week’s must-reads for managing in the digital age, curated by the MIT SMR editors.
The first trillion-dollar companies — the likes of Apple, Microsoft, Alphabet, and Amazon — are built on digital platforms. But while successful platform companies yield a powerful competitive advantage, the nature of platforms is changing, as are the ecosystems and technologies that drive them and the challenges associated with managing them.
New research published by Harvard Business Review looks at the Silicon Valley mindset of “ask forgiveness, not permission” that has propelled some companies from fledgling startups into high-powered unicorns. But as research and recent examples (Uber, WeWork) show, prioritizing action over consideration can lead to unethical behavior.
If it’s your role to communicate data insights and persuade people to change their behavior, you’ll have more influence if you emphasize the people behind the numbers.
Accenture’s latest “Tech Vision” report, released this week, focuses on the technology trends that will redefine the enterprise this year and beyond. The findings show that leadership in the “post-digital” era will mean redefining the intersection between people and technology and focus largely on collaboration.
A major data breach is one of the worst challenges a manager can face, but in an age where businesses are moving IT operations to the cloud faster than ever, it’s one that leaders and teams must be prepared for. This article looks at how to lead with transparency to maintain stakeholders’ trust.
What Else We’re Reading This Week:
- The modern history of the “Sunday scaries” reflects how work has changed
- What the dating app Tinder taught us about disruptive innovation
- Why the “business case” for diversity isn’t working
Quote of the Week:
“Without proven results or an already profitable company, the founder is the product. The most effective entrepreneurs (and, by extension, managers pushing innovative change) do careful emotional work consistently over time — both publicly and in the privacy of their own thoughts — to present themselves as a solid investment.”
— Quy Huy, the Solvay Chaired Professor of Technological Innovation at INSEAD, in “How Leaders Should Navigate Long-Term Uncertainty”