Show me your culture and I tell you if you will be disrupted

Culture is something that cannot be overstated.

All the time you read about how retailers or branded manufacturer get disrupted or overtaken by pureplayers. You better do Cross Channel or even better do a digital transformation.

In my opinion, that is not always the solution because it does not tackle the core of the problem.

Of course Cross Channel makes sense for some companies and there is a lot of good research out there.

But when I see senior people refusing to take part in meetings scheduled for 5pm, blocking access to their availability in their calendars and otherwise behaving in every way that is maximizing their individual utility – then something is wrong. And it cannot be cured by a “Digital Transformation” or a big cross channel project.

Because any project started in a culture like that is likely not to succeed. When Heads of Departments try to protect their interests and resources by playing politics, you will have a hard time when a streamlined organization of a pure player with a great culture cuts to your crap like a hot knife through butter. While you are still trying to establish a steering committee for a waterfall-like project methodology (that is not fast and agile enough anyway), your competitor is already taking serious revenue away from you.

You do not have to pay 1000$ for a flight to silicon valley to visit companies with a great culture. There is a chance that there is one close to you. A great example close to where I currently live is Shopware. When I visit that company I see people working with passion, drive and fun. Of course they are successful, giving their competitors  a hard time. Just watch the people doing their work and you know it can’t be any other way.

The CEO of Shopware, Stefan Heyne, once told me “our success is 100% because of our people. Transplant our guys and our culture to any other business and it will be successful”. I believe that a 100 percent.

Can you say the same about your team, your organization?

It is hard to say if your business model can be disrupted. But if you need a quick check – just answer the above question.

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