Large organizations have the capital, talent, and resources to drive business innovation, yet they often get disrupted. What can IT do to hedge against this? - Pulse Q&A

Large organizations have the capital, talent, and resources to drive business innovation, yet they often get disrupted. What can IT do to hedge against this?

#organizational structure,#innovation,#disruption,#strategy @IT Number of answers: 0

Anil Earla, Head of Information and Data Analytics

, answered on 2017-12-15T00:00:00Z, a year ago

There are three things that I have seen outstanding IT leaders do better than their peers to hedge against disruption — be honest with themselves and the team, create a culture that's comfortable with failing, and work closely with the business.

More on the first, companies and leaders need to be brutally honest in assessing organizational capabilities as candidly as they assess people capabilities. It's difficult to admit that your team doesn't have the right culture, mindset, or skills in place to embrace the change that's needed. This usually happens because the team isn't prepared or open to this. One way I have ensured the preparedness of my team is to make sure they don't get isolated with their day-to-day tasks. We challenge each other to stay tuned by attending handpicked events and engaging with peers outside Visa. We also try and hire technologists who are customer-obsessed. Often times these are ex-entrepreneurs who naturally have an open mindset and keep their obsession alive even at a larger organization.

Second, adopting agile with a mindset to deliver MVPs quickly is important. This may not be practical across every team or industry, but there should be very good reasons to not do it. Organizing smaller teams within the larger org structure and enabling them to run, fail fast and forward is key to moving at the right speed. We pride ourselves at doing multiple POCs with promising new entrants at any given time, giving younger companies the feedback they need to flourish while keeping Visa on the leading (and sometimes bleeding) edge. We scale the ones that work beyond POCs and work with our business counterparts to roll out the new product successfully. It's also key to follow the progress all the way through as opposed to ‘throwing innovation over the IT|Business wall'. CIOs and IT teams need to move away from being ‘order takers' into driving business goals with the right solutions. They have a very privileged role in their company and cannot afford to take a back seat as has been the traditional IT mindset.

Lastly, none of this matters if you don't have your business priorities right. Often IT teams end up spinning wheels on things that don't align with the CEO's agenda and prioritize the wrong projects. Talk to the business and customers, early and often. If a forum doesn't exist for this, create one, get leadership buy-in and send out your learnings to the broader leadership.

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Large organizations have the capital, talent, and resources to drive business innovation, yet they often get disrupted. What can IT do to hedge against this? - Pulse Q&A

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