Change is the one constant in business. To that end, many companies are expanding their services and workforces globally, and workplaces are broadening locations beyond corporate offices and buildings.
Businesses are becoming borderless. This challenge creates changes that impact people, places, productivity, and products or services. Some will be poised to capture this opportunity, and others will be left behind.
People, i.e., your employees, contractors, and supplier ecosystem are the core of your business can be your biggest asset or biggest risk. Having the best people can provide a competitive advantage, while the wrong people can drain the business. On the people side of the business there have been two major shifts. They are:
- Inspiration. What inspires people to join your business and stay with your business? People get inspired by working where their talents are recognized, and those talents are contributing to a meaningful outcome. It’s about making a difference.
- Talent. Your business can hire people with the right skills anywhere in the world. Distance, borders, and workplaces have become mostly irrelevant. Businesses have been able to engage previously unavailable resources and provide those resources with a different value proposition as a result. It’s not just about compensation; it’s about lifestyle and making a difference. How does this change your business strategy?
For a very long time, work defined people in society. Work also defined a location. But in many situations, that’s no longer the case.
Work is now described as what you do and fulfilling that role regardless of the location. This adjustment sets an expectation that the tools will be available to work from anywhere (WFA) your people choose. That requires two more fundamental shifts in business. They are:
- Trust. People received supervision because they came to work at a location each day. WFA requires a shift toward trusting that they will get the job done and measure outcomes.
- WFA tools. Traditionally, tools to help employees work from home were located at the workplace. Today, many tools are based on technologies that allow people to work anywhere in the world. Providing the tools people need to get their jobs done wherever they are, can be a significant change and advantage.
Everyone has heard the adage, “Work smarter, not harder.” This statement has never rung truer. Businesses can enable productivity enhancements by investing in the right assets, technology, and tools.
To do this necessitates an investment in productivity – a digital transformation made more practical by the cloud. Applications, storage, and collaboration platforms are now available, cost-effectively, to businesses of all sizes. These systems are prebuilt and ready for configuration and personalization for your workflow, providing unprecedented business agility. The variety of communications and collaboration tools in the cloud have exploded, enabling businesses to find solutions best suited to their needs. These tools are available to your people anywhere and provide significant productivity enhancements.
Products and Services
People, places, and productivity focus on internal aspects of the business. Successful businesses know that the customer is the most important component. The outcomes, products, and services that you deliver to customers should exceed expectations. Exceeding expectation is very challenging but is possible with outcome innovation.
Being innovative and personalizing the product or service can help the business rise to the top of its sector. Data is required to understand customers and make decisions that drive positive outcomes for you and your clients.
What Borders Limit Your Business?
All businesses have something that limits their growth – no business is the same. Rising to the top of your sector requires that you identify the limiting factors and remove them.
Ask your organization:
- What borders limit your workers?
- What borders inhibit working from anywhere?
- What borders limit worker productivity?
- What borders prevent exceeding customer expectations?
Answering these questions and removing these boundaries can pave the way to business success.
Borderless Business Opportunities
Removing business borders will require a cultural and digital transformation. This transformation necessitates technology that spans communications, collaboration, contact center, document management, security, cloud, remote access, automation, key business applications, and data analytics.
This opportunity is significant. But note it can be challenging. By removing borders, your business can:
- Recruit and retain the best talent.
- Provide workers with the tools and applications required to WFA.
- Deliver cloud applications to enhance collaboration and productivity.
- Provide the best possible customer experience and support for innovative products and services.
Now that you have more insight, do you feel prepared to take on the borderless business opportunity?
[Scott] is writing on behalf of the SCTC, a premier professional organization for independent consultants. Our consultant members are leaders in the industry, able to provide best of breed professional services in a wide array of technologies. Every consultant member commits annually to a strict Code of Ethics, ensuring they work for the client benefit only and do not receive financial compensation from vendors and service providers.