Julie Sweet is the CEO of a 500,000-person consulting firm with thousands of clients, all of whom rely on her to be focused on changes, trends, and opportunities for the future.
In an interview on Oct. 8th, she made the following remarks, all of which we at Gravitate believe directly apply to our beloved association space:
"What COVID has done, we thought would take a decade. We are in a ‘once in a digital era’ moment.
Think about the Industrial Revolution. It was going on for a couple of hundred years and then Henry Ford, came along and actually created the modern corporation. If you look at the digital era, it has been going on since the 50's. But now is the moment.
Business is 20% in the cloud today but we think we are going rapidly to 80%.
Prior to COVID, I thought this would take a decade across Industries. We now estimate it will take five years. Think about what this means – the difference between being 20% in the cloud and 80% in the cloud.
We are platforming global business.
The gap between digital leaders and laggards is widening - back in 2019, we published a study that measured companies by technology breath, depth, leadership and culture. The top 10% were performing twice as well as the bottom 25%. When COVID happened and everything went online, this gap between the digital leaders and laggards widened immediately. What we are seeing right now is the digital leaders are investing to make the gap even wider.
The laggards are falling into two camps. Some say, "I need to do things differently in order to leapfrog because I am behind." Others say, "I am going to try harder." All right, so they are trying harder but they are not changing fundamentally how they are going to get to the destination. And so, I think twelve to eighteen months from now, you will see these two categories of companies emerging and you can guess which companies we think are going to be the most successful.
I will tell you, when I talk to a CEO or a chief digital officer, I ask them about their innovation strategy and who they partner with. If they do not have clear partners, I know they are not really being innovative, because innovation cannot be done alone. It has to have organizations and partners outside of your own company."
At Gravitate, our focus is on insights, and we believe that an incredibly effective and powerful way for associations to navigate the changes described by Julie Sweet is to provision everyone on staff with the data analytics they need to maintain an understanding of (and quickly spot changes in) anything pertaining to your members, your constituents, and your environment.
Analytics for Everyone - make this your Henry Ford Moment.