March 11, 2015
PUBLISHED BY Katherine Barr
Entrepreneurs have always embraced innovation and change, and reinventing oneself as an entrepreneurial leader will be critical over the next handful of years. Here are the secrets to setting yourself up for success:
1. Leverage Flexibility In Your Workforce
The U.S. workforce is becoming much more fluid, driven by the rise of an “on demand” economy powered by companies such as Uber, as well as an increasing desire by people to have more flexibility in their work schedules. By 2020, 40% of the American workforce will be freelancers, contractors and temp workers according to the Intuit 2020 Report. Think about ways that you can tap into technology platforms that provide “on demand” resources in relevant functional areas of your company.
A key framework to keep in mind when thinking about this is “core” versus “context.”
“Core is what companies invest their time and resources in that their competitors do not. Core is what allows a business to make more money and/or more margin, and make people more attracted to a business than to its competitors,” according to Geoffrey Moore, who wrote Crossing the Chasm and works with our portfolio companies on their go to market strategy. “Core gives a business bargaining power: it is what customers want and cannot get from anyone else.” In other words, core is critical to maintain in-house and context can be outsourced.
Areas to seriously consider outsourcing from a technical perspective are next-generation technology companies leveraging machine learning, artificial intelligence and robotics to deliver cost reduction and resource efficiencies to their customers. One example of this includes Kiva Systems, the robotic logistics system acquired by Amazon. Another example of this is WorkFusion, a SaaS platform (and portfolio company of my firm) that manages data collection, analysis and synthesis by pairing machine learning with human data analysts, and incrementally automates repetitive work over time.
Read the full post here.