Building the Virtual Enterprise, 4 Tips to Help Get It Right
One of the old tenants at Andersen Consulting, the predecessor to Accenture, was the notion of People, Process and Technology. It would seem this is a universal truth! Can’t solve a problem without all three.
Earlier this week, I outlined what 3 CEOs were doing to “never go back” to a traditional office. Stating the obvious that these were all technology companies where writing, texting, emailing, teaming and zooming are part of the everyday experience.
This won’t work for everyone. But it will work for companies seeking talent as a constraint to growth. We are seeing wage inflation in the tech space as talent grows harder to find. Clearly, the distributed enterprise is harder to build.
It seems to me the areas where you need to get it right are below:
- Lead generation has moved from the cold call or email blast to digital marketing.
- Put your very best people on key pursuits. Because you are virtual, this makes sense.
- Sell in teams. If your deal flow is down, you must win a higher percentage. Process matters.
- Executive engagement. Don’t let your customer’s leaders off the hook. They need to be involved.
- Leverage tools like Trello, Resultmaps and regular stand-ups and status meetings to ensure deliverables, dates and scope.
Culture and Collaboration
- Create “places” that are in proximity to your employees. This can be an executive suite, or office in a cool city where people gather.
- Develop a mentor system to ensure nobody is falling through the cracks.
- Be disciplined about reviews. Make sure to have a broad set of eyes on every review.
- Look for people who like independence.
- Create a buddy system and remote paired programming plan for younger employees.
- Look at pools of talent in places where you might never have done that before.
Finally, executives will need to travel more, speak more and be substantially more transparent. It is these items that create trust. Trust leads to culture.