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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Midmarket Study and My Experience

Have always been interested in how smaller to mid size companies can utilize large enterprise technologies and processes.  Having worked with many startups and large enterprises, I saw how technology could greatly help the midmarket players in virtual collaboration and speed to understanding of the market.   IBM recently did a study on the subject that is work reading. Available here.  Both very broad and in depth view.

" ...The 2012 IBM Global CEO Study, “Leading Through Connections” is a result of face-to-face conversations with more than 1,700 CEOs in 64 countries and 18 industries. The study reveals three essential imperatives that cut across geographies and industries: empowering employees through values; engaging customers as individuals; and amplifying innovation with partnerships.

For Midmarket organizations, businesses with 100-1000 employees, the CEO Study customer imperative rings particularly true. Today’s connected consumers are empowered, and they demand instant access to personalized content on their own terms. Of the 226 Midmarket CEOs interviewed for the CEO Study, 76 percent cited strong customer relationships as a primary source of sustained economic value for their organizations. Sixty-seven percent pointed to theimportance of human capital, while half cited product and service innovation, and one-third called out their partner network.... " 

The empowerment of the mid to small size company started decades ago, with the availability of computing at the desk and home.  But now the integration of telecommunications, access to new data and sensor sources, and a profusion of applications to do very focused tasks have led to a tipping point that is remarkable

As an example, my recent collaboration with a startup and a very large enterprise used a Cloud solution that allowed each of the participants to post updates to research in a shared folder.  As new findings were discovered, notifications were sent to all, and each could comment on the results.

The results were quick and  simple, without learning a software system.   Its access on mobile devices allowed participants to quickly respond. This led to innovation in the space and alignment to next steps.  An excellent example that any business, from individual to enterprise, can use. I see this ability continuing to expand.  The small to mid market groups need more of this capability.

This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business program, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines  of a smarter planet. More on that here: goo.gl/VQ40Cg 

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