By Simon Fairbairn
Ingenico, a Worldline company
A new year, a new challenge and a new opportunity. On which side of the coin will we fall? How will our outlook be framed with the first tentative steps into the new year setting our compass for the road ahead? Do we carry the baggage of 2020 with us, or have we shrugged our metaphorical shoulders, picked ourselves up after the holiday rest and put our best foot forward?
In life, the transition into a new year bombards us with a lexicon of self-help and purpose, a focus on finding our new better self, a chance to re-engage and reach our true potential. But with all this talk of personal growth and change, it's easy to see that this applies just as much to organizations. After all, aren't they populated by the very same people who are being activated to stretch and grow? Points of inflection such as a new year or a holiday break serve just as well to catalyze the fortitude to re-engage, re-imagine and push forward, all over again.
But 2020 was a year like no other, and with batteries emptied and no new normal quite yet in sight, making this change might be more tricky. So, here's the kicker: no one says you have to go it alone. What 2020 made clear is that whether as a species, or a collection of organizations, we work best when we collaborate. Indeed, working together in 2020 helped accelerate fundamental innovations, not the least our collaborative toolsets (Teams, Zoom et al) that we all now know and love, as well as the startlingly rapid development of not one, but several vaccines. The point is we are better when we work together than when we go it alone.
So, as organizations, why do many of us continue to try and go it alone, forging our own path while zealously protecting our borders and guarding our secrets? Perhaps time could be better invested in understanding where our competencies and capability truly lie when it comes to creating value. That way, we can equally invest in creating partnerships and ecosystems for areas where we may need help.
When I was an economics student exploring the dark arts of negotiation, the first thing we were taught was to imagine the deal in play was a pie and that we should never move too quickly to cut the pie. The focus instead was always to invest first in making the pie bigger. In the context of the argument above, being open to working with other parties or experts may give a better route to value creation and growth that far outweighs going it alone.
Whether this means expanding your circle of partners or engaging with known professionals who specialize in what you need, assistance is available. It may carry a cost or mean giving something away, but look beyond this, as the size and value of the end result is what's really important.
The moral of the tale is not to be afraid of exploring what others can bring to your quest and to open your doors to the potential of others who may help you make your pie just that little bit bigger.
Simon Fairbairn is head of professional services/EMEA for Ingenico, a Worldline company. Take a look around the new Payments Landscape in this Ingenico white paper with a special focus on the impacts to consumer behavior: www.ingenico.com/payment-landscape-new-normal. To reach Simon, please email email@example.com.
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