What is technology intelligence? Do you have it? Do you need it? Why?
I wrote down a few observations and thoughts.
- Technology Intelligence is the ability to look at developments in technology and use them as enablers. You can map a new technology development to something you do in your organization. This may be a new product design, a new extension to an existing product, a service design, a new way of marketing, a better way to obtain sales leads, a simpler method of manufacturing etc. There are no bounds.
- Technology Intelligence is needed for almost every organization. Organizations in certain industries may need it more than others. If you have it, you will certainly have some competitive advantage over others, who don’t.
- Each new development in technology creates at least one marketplace which may over time blossom into multiple markets and an entire industry.
- When it appears, a new technology may not appear earth shattering. So people tend to ignore it. There will be a series of minor shifts, a few scattered applications and all of a sudden, there will be some company getting millions of customers. Don’t look to journalists to cover it (unless they are some one like Jon Udell).
- Some times a simple technology may go viral with great impact. Twitter is a good example. It started as an innocuous micro-blog. It was ignored by most in the beginning.
- The real winners will be the ones who can find new applications for a technology and successfully implement it and educate others. Leveraging technology is a special skill. It can be acquired.
- Detect trends early. These are also known as weak signals. First, start with an open mind. The smart ones have the ability to spot an early trend.
Can you track technology, using technology? You bet. Thanks to internet and a few other factors, you can use technology to gain more technology intelligence. This process is called tech mining.
That is what we do for a living.