- Cultivate new mindsets – the biggest challenge we find in building a balanced portfolio, where an organisation works simultaneously at exploiting and exploring opportunities, is not rooted in technology or even in making organisational changes – it falls squarely into leadership and the mindsets we are able to adopt, as we connect the data from validating the desirability, viability and feasibility of new opportunities, into full-scale commercialization.
No matter how compelling the data may be or how clear the stage-gates are defined, if we struggle to ‘see’ the opportunity, within the business portfolio, we will ask for more. Investing in leadership mindsets, our ability to adapt ‘how we see’ is key to making the clearest strategic choices which this transition requires
- Build portfolio management into a dynamic capability – this is one of the best investments we have seen innovative organisations make. They recognise that an integrated portfolio requires more than just one set of rules for emerging businesses and another for more mature ones. The weighing of new options, leveraging capabilities across opportunity areas and making investment decisions all span across the portfolio, and this is often where a good look into the current workings of portfolio management is needed.
- Watch for the health, not just the performance of the business portfolio – we often think of growing new business ventures as a one-directional journey. Yes, with phases, stage gates and hurdles to cross along the way. But the direction is clear… Onwards. However, the business portfolio often contains a mix of ‘health issues’, from current business lines under-estimating the risk of disruption to weakened partnerships or waning collaboration, all are tell-tell signs of a portfolio that would not be as welcoming of new stars, and which might present some real distractions that ‘fixing the current portfolio’ would have. All these limit our ability to grow a future-fit portfolio – at the very least, to slow us down, to be overtaken by more nimble players.
Have a good weekend everyone!
Saar Ben-Attar (A Connector Beyond Limits)