Winning in The Fourth Revolution (Part I)

In response to a few requests I’m going to outline the skills and competences I believe companies, big or small, should be focusing on to make sure they survive, and indeed thrive in The Fourth Industrial Revolution.
First some context.  For many years I have been convinced that we live in a VUCA World.  A world that is Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous.  A world where Purpose and Executional Excellence have replaced strategy as the killer apps.  A world where Leadership is at a premium.
2019–20 sees VUCA 2.0.  Yes the world will remain Volatile, Uncertain, Complex (Brexit is the posterchild for VUCA) but ambiguous is being replaced by Accelerating.
VUCA on steroids.  Why?
1.    Politically we are seeing the end of the American Age, the rise and rise of China, confusion in the Euro block, a more and more emboldened Russia, a navel gazing West, continued tensions in the Middle East and the rising tide of nationalism, extremism, autocracy and polarisation.
2.    Socially, cyber-terrorism and cyber-criminals rule.  Society is becoming increasingly concerned about privacy and stress caused by the weapons of mass distraction and jobs are disappearing because of advanced technology.
3.    Economically we are facing accelerating disruption from FANG (Facebook, Amazon/Apple, Netflix, Google), vast new venture capital funding with a winner takes most world.
4.    Technology-wise we are seeing scientific acceleration driving change faster than many individuals and institutes can handle.
Welcome to the Fourth Industrial Revolution …:
The First        water/steam mechanised production,
The Second    electric power creates mass production,
The Third       digital automates at speed,
The Fourth     technologies fuse and blur the lines between physical and digital.
How do we survive and thrive?
More next week.

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Kevin Roberts

Kevin Roberts is founder of Red Rose Consulting; business leader and educator; author and speaker; adviser on marketing, creative thinking and leadership.


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