Thursday, 29 October 2009

How iPhone became the secret weapon

Can technology disrupt old thinking and even boost the innovation process?

This is a story about an article I read today in the swedish press. The article is about one of the major newspapers in Sweden. We all know how the newspaper industry is suffering, right? They have tough times ahead of them. They need to break out of old thinking and traditional ways of doing business. How do you trigger that process? Where do you start? How to you get the entire organisation committed?

This particular newspaper, called Aftonbladet had a crazy idea. They gave all of their employees an iPhone. That's right every single one of them got their own iPhone. This was about a 6 months ago.

Even if the idea looked crazy at first, it was also was a very strategic one. The reasoning behind the decision was:
”As a media company, you need to be where your customers are”
Brilliant thinking. The customers are on the iPhone today. The results? Two of the most interesting statements in the article are:
”We have already received over 40 suggestions of applications we could develop to make money and become more efficient”
 ”Among many things, we built a client to the phone messaging system that allowed users to shake the phone on their way into a meeting to get an hour of meeting registered. It's really cool to see people standing and shaking their phones”
I really think this story is a good example of how technology can serve as a catalyst to get things started. Could this work in your organisation as well?

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