Convergence is the process of synthesizing many things into one thing, but the magic doesn’t happen all at once; there is a gradual sequence of events and when we understand the process, we can sense what may come next.
Figure 1: Platform Convergence
Look around your office. If you see one or more of the examples I am about to describe, be assured that convergence is taking root in your organization.
To be sure, the examples below are just a few signs convergence is occurring within the DNA of the organization.
- IT and marketing strategies becoming aligned in your organization by creating executive sponsorship. For example, in 2012 Kimberly-Clark created a new convergence management role to develop agile marketing technologies that successfully improved brand profitability.
- Media convergence suddenly becomes your company’s mantra. When your organization starts running omnichannel marketing campaigns (I mentioned one case in my last article) to boost profitability by employing multi-channel media, convergence in your organization is taking place before your eyes.
- Educated stakeholders are hired to identify the best technology and user interface; they are being sought for your organization in order to increase shareholder value. Clearly, if you see a new class of stakeholders in your organization demanding greater transparency and efficiency, you know convergence has taken root.
- Your organization is constantly reinventing its cloud and mobile technologies. This strategy makes sense, considering in the next four years a technology convergence will alter our lives and our behavior.
- Industries are merging and you can see that very thing happening in your own company. For example, Apple has become the ecosystem leader in the wearable devices explosion, while Google has developed wearable devices such as Google Glass.
- Online, indoor, and outdoor advertising are merging media with large amounts of data on the age, gender, and financial situation of customers provided in in real time.
Flies in the Ointment
Without C-Suite executive buy, it’s hard to see how convergence would be leveraged well enough. But there are other places where executive sponsorship is a given. I think it’s fair to note that organizations such as Nordstrom have data innovation labs foster and leverage technology joined with business processes.
Without educated stakeholders, and end users, convergence will fail because those workers cannot adapt quickly enough to the rapid changes occurring in almost all organizations today.
Platforms such as LinkedIn can be used to do market research and assessments on one hand, and identify individuals who can help make those joins happen in profitable way for organizations on the other.
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