Platt Perspective on Business and Technology

Assumption 5 – Where are the true boundaries between a globally connected company and its supply chain and value chain context?

Posted in macroeconomics, reexamining the fundamentals by Timothy Platt on February 26, 2010

In the years and even the first few decades after World War 2, businesses – major corporations and smaller businesses, and all in-between were built as stand-alone entities. They developed and secured knowledge and expertise in-house and were defined in many respects as oases of value in knowledge and expertise-devoid deserts. Their value was determined by their ability to in a disconnected sense offer unique value that could not be found anywhere else.

Startups and early stage businesses still need to offer unique value to really succeed, and so do more established firms. But the context that businesses operate and sustain in has changed completely, and now there can be more knowledge and expertise crucial to any business outside its walls than there is within it, and even where there is great potential for developing and sustaining unique market value.

Much of this shift can be traced to fundamental changes in our information and communications capabilities and certainly to the advent of the Intranet, though it would be simplistic to simply try and place all of that as coming from that once source. Still, much of our rapidly evolving expansion of supply chain and much of the concept of value chain has been made possible by this technology shift.

We now face not stand-alone businesses but rather business ecologies, and business identity and value comes at least as much from being able to organize and manage resources both inside and from outside the walls, as it does from creating unique value within the walls per se.

That, I add is a point that divides business concept and strategy generations, with one side of the divide denying it and the other taking it as a basic and largely invisible assumption. So this is an assumption that is in transition, and in a sometimes messy transition at that.

One Response

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  1. Justina Rolan said, on March 7, 2011 at 11:31 pm

    I’ve wanted to write something similar to this on my webpage and this has given me a concept. Cheers.


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