McKinsey recently posted a set of 9 questions all board should be asking about how technology is being used in their companies. It’s worth a read for all the questions and the additional detail they provide. I want to focus on the first four and some of the implications.
- How will IT change the basis of competition in our industry?
- What will it take to exceed our customers’ expectations in a digital world?
- Do our business plans reflect the full potential of technology to improve our performance?
- Is our portfolio of technology investments aligned with opportunities and threats?
Each of the questions McKinsey asks above begins with the understanding that technology is a tool. As a tool, it must be understood not only by some smart techy guys ensconced in a corner somewhere but by key leaders all the way up to and including board members. Too often, the business lets IT speak a foreign language and then get sidetracked. Too often, IT lets business walk away when they don’t understand the business implications of the use (or not) of a technology.
I especially love the first question on IT changing the basis of competition. We have plenty of examples of how technology changed everything. No business wants to be left flatfooted. I think it’s incumbent upon everyone to pay more attention to the implications, benefits, and true costs.
So read the entire article.