Below is a graph illustrating how the list of the world's largest companies by market cap has changed in just the past 15 years.
It's interesting to note that only 1 of the top 5 from 2001 is still in the top 5.
If you go back to 1955, the top 10 list includes General Motors, US Steel, Chrysler, Amoco, CBS, Goodyear, Firestone... and NONE of the these companies make even the top 20 list today.
We live in a rapidly changing world. So, why do once thriving companies fall from their market position?
1. The Status Quo: Company leaders get too comfortable with the status quo. I have frequently heard company leaders state "this is the way we have always done it in this company". Well, that may be, but eventually someone with a more progressive view will change it. For example, Kodak failed to transform their business to digital in a timely manner, Kodak's market dominance in camera film lulled them into ignoring the market shift. By the time they finally acted, their competitors had captured the new digital market and Kodak was no longer a top contender in the new digital camera/film market.
2. Narrow Perspective: Company leaders often rely on just their fellow company leaders and people in their same market for guidance. While it is comfortable to talk with people that think like you and have the same perspective as you, it is also a risk. You need to a broader view to consider all the factors and fresh new options. Business leaders should engage experts from outside their comfort zone to get a broader view and progressive ideas. If you don't, a competitor will.
3. Change: Once you determine your plan of action, it must be executed in a timely manner. Often companies talk about change and progressive ideas, but fail to fully execute. Do you have the right "Change Catalysts" on your team?
Whether you are a market-leading, multi-billion dollar company or a small company, these business principles apply. Currently, Digital Transformation is reshaping every industry. How is your digital transformation going? Will your business be gaining market share or loosing during these rapidly changing times?
Invest in the right Thought Leaders and Change Catalysts to help you craft your company's future.
Mark Johnson is the Chief Executive at Xtrii. He is a proven CIO, renowned, global technology advisor and business leader.