Adapting the Automotive Industry to Think Like a Startup.

Startup Driven corporate innovation strategy will define the ultimate move to the future mobility technologies and solution to the Big Data needs to allow an autonomous, connected electrified future to happen… key to this is the need for new attitudes at a corporate level.

Let’s start with a question, why do the large incumbants of industry routinely fail to create, or understand the potential impact of ‘over-the-horizon’ innovations and bring them to market in a way that will enable them to build next-generation businesses?

If you think of common industries that are in a state of disruption, these might be Communication, Entertainment and Transportation and for modern transportation, vehicle manufacturers, parts, distribution, sales/retainers/service and the provision of infrastructure are all being transformed much like the dramatic changes within communication and entertainment on social, technological and economic and cultural levels.

It often seems left to the companies that have startup roots and behave like startups, even as they mature, businesses like Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple are successful in keeping the startup vibe alight.  Additonally, when businesses that carry the startup ethos invest or aquire startups they are most likely to turn them into successes with a higher frequency compared to corporations that have lost their start up DNA. This can be noted for an institution (Banks etc.) to large industry corporations. The obvious risk is that these new business models might end up cannibalising or completely disrupting a corporations’ existing models which may be very difficult to accept.

If we analyse corporations we begin to see that many are particularly good at using their R&D organisation to produce innovations that support, continue to scale , and even extend their existing business models but are weak at creating new business opportunities using innovative technologies and novel business models.

It is natural to then conclude that when you look within the automotive industry, businesses such as Tesla, are leapfrogging incumbants by evolving new and agile transportation ecosystems or technology adoption. This highlights that a Startup Driven Innovation Ethos is likely to provide the future thinking of mobility.

Corporations need to not only work with start ups but also work like start ups using innovative thinking in their core business in emerging opportunities that are extensions of existing business or new ventures, but also in disruptive ventures. Innovation must be a core value.

Additional to this is the adoption of big data thinking and implementation as well as access to a critical survival needs services such as talent acquisition and access to funding.

If we are to shift to Autonomous Connected Electrified ‘ride sharing, on-demand future mobility chasing and harnessing the Big Data required to make that leap, may well come from Startups.

Balancing growth with innovation will require subtle thinking, for all involved…

The Ed.