Someone at Huawei was undoubtedly on the ball. While the world woke up to the shocking news that Google was disconnecting it’s OS and Play Store from Huawei, many observers thought it was over for the Chinese company.
Amazingly the company had a Plan B which foresaw this very event. OK, they had an early warning when the same thing was done to ZTE another Chinese company awhile back. But so often top management sees the writing on the wall and fails to act.
It was precisely for this reason that scenario planning as a vital management tool was created in the ’60s by Pierre Wack, then employed by Royal Dutch Shell. Since then it has been widely used by Governments, the Defence Department in most Governments and almost every large corporation in the world.
The world is teeming with complexity. In the last ten years, the complexity top management faces have jumped exponentially. Small events in distant corners of the world can have a ripple effect on your business. The internet is an excellent carrier of the disruption virus.
Someone dreams up a black limousine service, a few pivots later taxi cab owners across the world face a significant threat to their previously sacrosanct existence. We all know the big stories, but there are millions of untold smaller stories across the globe.
One thing is for sure: doing business has become both easier and more difficult. For a more substantial enterprise that has $50 million or more in turnover, the variables become much more complicated. It’s virtually impossible for a management team to track everything without specialised help.
Answers to questions such as “how does Brexit impact your company, or the Iran embargo or the trade war with China or the ongoing climate crisis” are just some of the most significant scenario planning that a good company MUST have under its belt. In the case of Huawei, someone was alert, and the company has an alternative strategy. In fact, a new scenario emerges. Will this spell the end of the Google monopoly in years to come? Now that the dragon has been awakened, what does the future hold for the rest of the world?
You can gaze at your crystal ball, or you can fire up your software and plug in the relevant scenario.
Either way, I predict exciting times to come!