Are today’s captain’s of industry yesterday news?


It’s no surprise that the old adage of don’t fix what isn’t broken has been completely disrupted by all of the modern technology and the fast moving pace to off load everything your company once did to someone else….

Our industry is lead by what we herald as ‘Captains of Industry’ people who have been around the block more than a few times and have plenty of business acumen, but the question have these captains past their sell by date with their ability to adapt to the changing business environments. Much like the current UK government, have they lost touch with what their customers really want?

These captains of the industry are often the expensive employees of the enterprise companies they gennerally have a lifespan beween 24 to 96 months. The objectives they commit to the board of directors, shareholders are always based on infinite growth, the acquisition of competitors and an EBIT value over 20%. The same captains of the industry act now as highly paid consultants to strip the companies ”they made” to normal proportions. Te effecivly cashing in twice on the positions they once held.

New business models that can cope with the changed customer demand process and the new companies that did their business requirement assessment properly are primarily driven by the visionaries that turned dreaming, whining with help of commercial / financial officers into tangible concepts. This wasn’t on the agenda’s in the last decade. The CFO was in charge. He/she granted the budgets, did the taxonomy and everyone followed the “leader”. I guess we will be in a transition period for 3 – 5 years. The  companies with changed innovative business models will lead. The established companies that will go back to core business and get a “common sense behaviour” message in their companies will be secured, survive and grow.

We see today that we are only now realising what standardisation can do for a business in improving cost efficiency long after the heyday of big returns from the print business that became a distant memory a long time back. We see and hear these captains making very public statements about where they see it all going, but are they really equipped now to understand this fast paced industry? And to the speak with complete and clear independence, something many people are unable to have.

It is hard to know whether some fresh young blood would be equipped for the political battlefield if they stood out from the crowd and became a new person that we looked up to, and would the industry embrace what a youngster has to say….

With new business models, business opportunities and the need to expand your business across multiple disciplined work streams are the search engines now our new captains, our ability to self publish and have our voice heard, our ability to pen what it is we want to communicate – with so many ways to be seen and heard are the captains able to keep up the pace of the real world operational voice.

The future is bright, but it isn’t orange, it is what we want it to be, dreams can be turned into reality with just a few clicks these days where we see barrow boys running multimillion dollar companies and dyslexics can fly us to the moon…. who needs the captains when we are capable of being in the drivers seat ourselves.

Author: Gary George

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One Response to “Are today’s captain’s of industry yesterday news?”

  1. Marjolein Kleinman Says:

    Very inspirational article.

    I think with the internet and the quick rise and falls of new technology it has become a lot easier as a young and small ”newbie’ to be heard.

    Look at Twitter or Digg, when they started out, they were the fresh new blood, they followed their dream, took their chance and they are now two of the biggest players of the web.

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