Don’t throw away outsourced industries, Innovate ?

1763647Just read an interesting article about the introduction of new suits for the formula one drivers of the Red Bull racing team. Why relevant for Innoversion ??

In the beginning of the 20th century, the eastern part of the Netherlands was famous for it’s textile industry. Perhaps because of the high concentration of sheep, but during time all textile producing companies were concentrating their business in this area.

When globalisation started to emerge, the whole region started to fall apart when all production transferred to low labor cost countries. This was not just the case in the Netherlands, but also visible in other countries. When I visited Bradford UK for my MBA study, you could still see the richdom of the past that will not return anymore.

But outsourcing your production does not mean that you have to outsource your intellect. That’s exactly what happened in the Netherlands. Focus was shifted from production of mean stream products to the design and even production of high tech fabrics.

Result: a powerfull business in creating fabrics for all kinds of applications, even for new high-tech suits in the Formula One. And who knows what other fabrics used in the car come from the Netherlands as well.

How can you use that. Always be alarmed if you see that the core of your current business is shifting away to other area’s of the world. But should you stop your business. Perhaps not. Perhaps now is the time to rethink what the real core of your business is and how you can apply this to other, perhaps even more profitable business models.

Do try this in your company. Select a group of people and put them in a room for two days. Show them a future scenario in which there is no room for the current business. What do they come up with as a new business using your existing intellect. Sounds strange, well for me winning companies are always defining the model of the future.

The Netherlands succeeded in fabrics, Nokia shifted from Wood to cell-phones. So, what is your next line of business.
Frank Wammes

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