The term Business Intelligence, which is sometimes used as a synonym for competitive intelligence, aims to support better business decision-making. That being said, I am always seeking additional “intelligence” that, among other things, reduces operational risks, increases efficiency and effectiveness, or provides opportunities for expansion, which by the way, is exactly what I received last week.
I was honored to be invited to participate in the most recent IESE Business School event in which IESE Strategic Management Professor Pankaj Ghemawat introduced us to his most recent book, “World 3.0: Global Prosperity and How to Achieve It.” For those of you that have never heard of IESE, which has its New York Center campus located directly across the street from Carnegie Hall, were recently chosen as having the top Executive Education (Open) program, according to Financial Times, in the world.
Professor Ghemawat provided us with some very powerful global business intelligence that is “…a relatively specific, grounded framework for action…” that, if executed properly, could provide for more global “prosperity” and “security.”
Execution has always been a top concern for corporate leaders. The Conference Board, a not-for-profit organization that “…creates and disseminates knowledge about management and the marketplace to help businesses strengthen their performance and better serve society…” reports in their “CEO Challenge 2010” survey, that the top two challenges cited by corporate CEO’s, chairmen and presidents around the globe are “excellence in execution” and “consistent execution of strategy by top management.”
Leadership plays the most important role in strategy execution. The government sponsored “Financial CrisisInquiry Report”which was released earlier this year, concluded, among other things, that the “… financial crisis was avoidable.” In other words, bad leadership decisions caused the financial crisis that destroyed the lives of millions of people around the world. Of course this is not the first time a government sponsored investigative report concluded that leadership was the underlining cause of a major crisis.
The Select Bipartisan Committee to investigate the preparation for the response to Hurricane Katrina, which was titled “A Failure of Initiative”, stated “The failure of initiative was also a failure of agility. Response plans at all levels of government lacked flexibility and adaptability. Inflexible procedures often delayed the response. Officials at all levels seemed to be waiting for the disaster that fit their plans, rather than planning and building scalable capacities to meet whatever Mother Nature threw at them. We again encountered the risk-averse culture that pervades big government, and again recognized the need for organizations as agile and responsive as the 21st century world in which we live.”
It is a leadership responsibility to drive the execution towards World 3.0 prosperity. However, it is going to take a World 3.0 leadership doctrine to accomplish World 3.0 objectives. There are, of course, leaders that will act upon the business intelligence presented in the book. The big question is whether or not there are enough of them out there to make a significant difference within our current global landscape.