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Have you recently watched a so-called ‘action movie’ from the 1980s or 1990s? If you did, you were probably surprised by how slow the movie was filmed compared to the newer titles in the genre. It just goes to show in what fast-evolving world we live. Fashions fade faster, hypes disappear when most people are still considering adhering to them and technology trends come and go at the speed of light. For organizations, it becomes increasingly difficult to know what technologies to adopt when you want to grow towards truly smart.

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Everything seems to have become smart, lately. We set ourselves smart goals, the electricity grid is becoming smart, we want to live in smart cities, we call our data smart because we can base smart decisions on them… And of course, we all want to work for smart businesses, because they are the ones that will survive. Is smart the new green and are we just ‘smartwashing’ everything?

Let’s take a look at what a smart business is. Smart businesses are companies that are able to adapt to changing circumstances and contribute to a sustainable future. Change is the defining term for the society that we are living in. Over the last couple of decades the pace of change has accelerated enormously. Technology advances that used to take decades, now happen in just years. The digital revolution shapes opportunities for businesses, but you need to grab these opportunities.

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As consultants, we regularly support our customers in their strategy review process. We are wholehearted advocates of this kind of initiative. Not because it gives us a nice opportunity to reconnect with the customer or because it might serve as a ramp-up to a new project. No it is more a matter of organizational hygiene: in today’s dynamic, interconnected and pretty unpredictable world, it is important that companies stay in tune with the industry they operate in. If organizations don’t, they become irrelevant sooner or later. And since we are genuinely committed to our customers’ successes, reviewing the plan is something we enthusiastically support.

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