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What MUST boards do to help the organisations they oversee survive? 4 Things apparently...

On the 7th Sept the South African Institute of Directors will be hosting a talk in which I"ll be discussing the role of boards with Louis Geeringh.

Specifically, we'll be considering whether boards are doing enough to prepare their organisations for a world where technological advancement is allowing whole industries to be disrupted in less time than a typical ERP implementation.

To whet your appetite, I thought I'd share a couple of ideas about what boards should be thinking about.

But these are not my thoughts. They were actually generated by an algorithm.

I typed "What Role Should Boards Play In An Exponential World?" and the machine did the rest....

Stanford's Clay Christensen once said, "Those who do not innovate will perish."

After reading Steve Blank's Supernormal, I came to a very different view.

I've recently observed that every emerging technology had at least one transformative impact that truly changed society, such as: steam engines, the electric grid, the rise of the Internet, the smartphone, and artificial intelligence.

These technologies have the potential to transform our world in profound and yet unknown ways.

But we can't know all of the potential implications of these technologies until we take a closer look.

The risks, the societal impact, and the societal expectations are all difficult to measure. But we need to figure it out.

The board of directors is uniquely positioned to play an important role in helping leaders understand the implications of this technology revolution.

For example, they can:

• Listen to leaders and business units about potential implications of changing societal norms and behavioral changes

• Interpret their discussions and research and propose insights and action items to executives, directors, and the board

• Help leaders identify opportunities for learning and to change current processes

• Facilitate innovation and risk-taking among company leaders.

In today's marketplace, disruption takes many forms and is faster and more significant than ever before. The ability of any one company to thrive in a world of exponential technologies is dependent on the abilities of their board members to better understand and navigate the next wave of disruption.

Pretty cool eh?

And the only edit I made was to embolden one of the sentences.

But the ramifications of these types of technologies for incumbent businesses are significant.

They can no longer rely on their defensive moats of size and distribution to protect their historically sedate internal rates of change.

You see technology is opening new opportunities at scales that were unimaginable just a few years back.

The battle between every startup and incumbent comes down to whether the startup gets distribution before the incumbent gets innovation
Alex Rampell, Andressen Horowitz

So what MUST boards do to help the organisations they oversee survive?

Why not join Louis and I to find out whether we agree with the views of the machine?

p.s. My sentence was completed by



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