I read a report by OECD/Economic Intelligence Unit/Cisco Systems sent to me by a friend. The paper themed 'Foresight 2020' - Economic, Industry & Corporate trends' The principal findings from the research are (among others):
Globalisation - Asia - There will be a redistribution of economic power esp. China & India. Non-OECD markets will account for a higher share of revenue growth between now and 2020 than OECD economies.
Demographics - Population shifts will have a significant impact on economies, companies and customers. The favourable demographic profile of the US will help to spur growth; ageing populations in Europe will inhibit it. Industries will target more products and services at ageing populations, from investment advice to low-cost, functional cars.
Atomisation - Network technologies and globalisation will enable firms to better use the world as their supply base for talent and materials. Processes, firms, customers and supply chains will fragment as companies expand overseas. As a result, effective collaboration will become more important. The boundaries between different functions, organisations and even industries will blur.
The BEST part of all is a survey (1650 participants - analysts, policy makers, senior executives) determine the areas of activity that will likely to offer the greatest potential for productivity gains in 2020.
In accordance to priority...
Priority No. 1 - KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT
" " 2. Customer Service & Support
" " 3. Operation & Production Process
" " 4. Strategy & Business Development
" " 5. Marketing & Sales
" " 6. HRM & Training
" " 7. Corporate Performance Management
" " 8. Product Development
" " 9. Financial Management & Reporting
" "10. Supply Chain Management
" "11. Risk Management & Compliance
" "12. Procurement
So guys...study hard and please contribute to this topic...KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT is gonna be your future.
Response by Almerica - Posted: 06 August 2006 at 10:01pm
Great reference points my friend. Truly spot on. Allow me to add something extra based on my own analysis of the market changes around us. The key towards progress or growth today no longer depends on just knowledge management on a particular subject / trade or skill.
Specialization in a specific skill or area of expertise will only be applicable for those professionals like medical surgeons, etc... Today, I personally feel that should one be able to move forward, knowledge management in only one or two areas will not ensure that the person or the company will do well. Gone were the days where people used to mock the phrase "Jack of all trades, master of none", today the more you know the more rounded you become, the wider your scope the higher your chances are of survival.
What I feel is going to be the decisive factor for success in the days ahead will be the ability of one to be a human sponge and absorb as much info as possible from all trades. The winners will be those that could tweak the age old phrase into a new one "Jack of all trades and master of all".
Robert Kiyosaki based his teachings on Paradigm Shifts but I believe that it is not completely correct. I have coined myself the tagline "Expanding Paradigms" (and also used it as my corporate tagline, hehe) because shifting means leaving something that you have been doing to do something else. I feel that we should expand our paradigm and not merely shift to another because from what we are currently doing or have done in the past, there will always be good things to learn from it and of course bad stuffs too for us to learn from and not to repeat them.
I feel that what we have to do is extend our reach for knowledge into many other areas and include them into our existing paradigm. Worried about mental overload? Well what we should do is to filter away whatever negatives we encountered from our current or old paradigm and maintain the good positive ones. Now imagine if we add on or fill the space of our mental capacity with more positive knowledge from other so called paradigms into our own existing one? What we have done is expanded our own paradigm by including positives from other paradigms to make us more formidable market players. Hmmm hope Koyasaki won't take offence of this but this is basically what I have been constantly instilling into our team.
Specialization into just one thing is very very risky today as a valuable know how may be reduced to shreads if it is suddenly easily replaced (technology does that with the blink of an eye sometimes). Knowledge Management in Multiple Areas actually does these :
- helps one to be quick to react to certain situations as many trades are interdependent with one another (even though on the surface it does not look so). Solid knowledge on another industry besides your own will act like the beacon or alarm button for you to decide on the direction that you would want to take if some indicators beep in that other industry. It will be a real pity if you know so much about your own thing only and then try to react when a "wave" hits your shores. Yes it would also be good to know something about the wind and not just the tides because they are interdependent
- helps you become flexible. With the market conditions being so violatile, ups and downs of a certain commodity or service are getting harder to predict. What may constitute to be a huge booming potential may just fade away with the market demands swaying its attention to other areas of focus. You need flexibility to survive in such scenarios and to be flexible you need to be well rounded. In short, a great swimmer needs to learn how to crawl, or fly pretty well too as you will never know when you need to do it. We just got to crawl when we are put in the desert, swim when placed in water and fly when dropped from the sky.
- allows you to adopt applications or solutions from other industries and apply them to yours. You'd be surprise how well that works sometimes because what is commonly carried out in one industry has frequently never been done in others before. Why reinvent the shape of the wheel when we can put it to good use in other aspects and yet be seen as a great idea that works in your own industry?
- gives you the competitive edge. You could also gain more as you are able to provide packaged services that covers various scopes of requirement from the client if you are a "Master of All". Clients prefer to deal with one who can solve or handle various scopes effectively for them as they would be able to have a better service support when needed. They need not have to encounter the hassle of having multiple vendor sources to track the root of any problems.
- opens your door to your future product / service lines. You could easily introduce new products or services to your existing client when you are ready as the barrier of having to undergo the "get to know" session no longer applies as you already have an existing business relationship with your client from a previous product or service that you have provided.
A closing phrase which I believe everyone would agree. Inspite of all efforts to gain knowledge and manage it well, knowledge only works best when it is applied.
Nik Zafri's Response - Posted: 07 August 2006 at 1:38pm
Yes of course…exactly what we're doing now…’unleashing all the potentials’ in this forum – all the competencies – all the knowledge – all the experience – all the data and learn & learn & learn new things - networking. You see..I can’t be running around doing the usual things that I’m doing…I got to ‘diversify’ (my version of your expanding paradigms – by the way…Mr. Kiyosaki is a good author but he tends to make us ‘guessing’ what he means in every line of his book…thus, I read Kiyosaki for fun…)
Eric, you're right about not sticking to one thing only. When you close your mind to something new, it means you are heading for BIG pitfalls. I know that most of them wanna keep/maintain their ‘branding’ (perhaps influenced by some ‘success stories’ of some billionaires) but being a fanatic in the ‘branding’ won’t bring you anywhere. I am still sticking to my 'branding' but I still do other things. Those billionaires out there, they also adopted similar approaches…they really love what they are good at, but for the sake of sustainability, they will resort to other things first and having succeeded, they will make a comeback to the things that they really like. (look at Donald Trump - even Bill Gates)
Knowledge Application - Yeap, do what you say, say what you do
Response from Almerica - Posted: 09 August 2006 at 1:07am
Yeah, my friend, in one of the episodes of The Apprentice, Trump hit the nail on the head. Quote "Most people have great ideas and knowledge which could make millions but if they fail to apply them or use them, they are still labelled as failures!" - how true.
Of course many people talk about needing huge capital to kick start something (not surprisingly I was one of them) but sometimes if we expand from our ideas and we are hungry enough, you'd be surprise how another idea may pop up to help you get what you need to start the engines running. So we just gotta crack our brains and make it work overtime to find the perfect solution rather than wallow in desperation reminiscing over how close we were with the brilliant idea that couldn't take off. Ah and the funny thing is that I am sure many of us shared the idea with others but since we couldnt take it off, others did with great results and impact. (Boy, did I have loads of those.)
Some of the "what could have been" stories of mine were ideas that were thought of with great self satisfaction and pride then, complimenting myself for coming up with such brilliant ideas (only to be brought down to earth when I didnt pursue it hard enough and let it just slowly slip away AND to find out that they have been thought out much later and carried out with extremely great successes by companies like Citibank, Std Chartered, and public listed development companies - mind you, they were 3 totally different ideas that were adopted by 3 giants!)hahaha but those were great lessons in life.
So for those with "know hows" and great ideas PUT IT TO GOOD USE! Find a way, there is always some funny "unthought of" solution hiding in the back of your mind.
Nik Zafri's Response :Posted: 09 August 2006 at 3:49pm
Thanks Eric (that's why I like this guy - they didn't make him the CEO for nothing..heheheh)
Here's some related excerpts from my 'old' collection of comments here in GMN and elsewhere. You will notice my 'consistency' in encouraging people on how to run business by 'going back to basics', the 'branding', 'diversification' and 'networking'. My only hope that our readers here can benefit from our experience...
No. 1 - Robert T. Kiyosaki - Rich Dad Poor Dad
I can say a little bit on Robert T. Kiyosaki Rich Dad/Poor Dad Series. If you read carefully Robert's view on 'let the money work for you', you will discover that he is also talking about another phrase that goes something like 'a business is something that do not require my presence and if I have to work there, it's not a business anymore, it becomes my job'. Many have been said about these two popular phrases - some relate them to Multi-Level-Marketing, Insurance, Stock/Shares, Properties etc. Some even lead to the famous Donald Trump of Trump International.
While these assumptions maybe true, but I think Robert is also talking about how you can spend and budget your money effectively. (At least I felt this is how it applies to me but to others it may apply differently)
In the Malaysian environment point of view, I may have not reached 100% on 'a business that do not require my presence' but I think I have achieved 'let the money work for you' by both working hard and smart.
e.g. I have 3 consultancy assignments to complete in a manyear. I've 'sub-contracted' the first 2 jobs to another 2 guys as I am not a superman to take all 3. Although I will eventually be paid for all 3 jobs, I still have to 'sacrifice' one job payment to cover my overheads (house, car, others) which leaves me with another 2 jobs. The 2nd job, I have to again 'sacrifice' for my 'capital' to run future jobs including to cover my office overheads and perhaps for marketing/training etc. The last job is the one that solely belong to me after taxation. In a way, I do not have to worry about my overheads, it has been 'paid'. I have to assume my 3rd job is my take home pay (nett). If I found out that one of the jobs is coming towards an end (contract completion), a month ahead, I will either reconvince the same client for reorder or start to find new prospects.
The simple scenarios above are something quite common to most of us but require only one thing in mind - Discipline! In my case, I think Robert is talking about Discipline and Proper Planning.
I also welcome those who feels that R.T.Kiyosaki has a different effect on them cos' as I said earlier, it's the way you see it and how you apply/customize it according to your nature of competency or industry.