We are experiencing a defining moment in the industry when we face monumental challenges that demand a bold, strategic approach. These challenges might seem overwhelming, but they also represent a unique opportunity to transform our organizations and prepare for a more promising future.
With over 20 years in the industry, I’ve seen similarities with other periods of disruptive change, but this time is distinct and novel. It requires a mindset shift for everyone involved in network operations, moving from direct interventions to intention-based operations and eventually to autonomy powered by artificial intelligence. I remember when mobile phones were just for talking. Suddenly, we were in the vanguard, sending text messages and connecting to the Internet. We were viewed as engineering freaks, and many executives claimed these innovations would never take off. Resistance to changing the status quo is a part of human nature. Generally, only those who adapt early and wisely use changes to survive.
In my role, I regularly speak with C-level executives from different organizations to understand their pain points and where they’re looking on the horizon. Then, I reevaluate and regularly adapt my organization’s value proposition. In my conversations with each of them, I find these common themes:
- Continuous Innovation: Innovation is key to survival and growth. Investing in advanced technology, efficient processes, and new business models can make a difference in your organization’s competitiveness. It’s undoubtedly one of the most important drivers for a TechCo.
- Resilience and Agility: The ability to quickly adapt to market changes is essential. This means being prepared for immediate crises and continually evolving. They understand that they must withstand the contraction. Still, if they’re unprepared for the opportunity, they’ll miss it when the outlook improves.
- Focus on Sustainability: Sustainability is more crucial than ever. Organizations that adopt sustainable practices will not only reduce their environmental impact in line with the UN 2030 agenda but can also find new market opportunities.
- Strategic Collaboration: Seeking alliances and strategic collaborations with other organizations can effectively leverage new opportunities and resources. Open RAN, network-as-a-service, and the Open Gateway initiative, are a few examples of collaboration enablers they see in the market.+
- Talent Development: People are a valuable asset. Investing in developing internal talent can yield a highly skilled and committed team. This is key to reducing unhealthy dependencies on suppliers and managing networks that continue to grow in network elements and complexity.
I believe that the leaders of CSPs are fully prepared to implement decisive measures. What they request from us, the providers, are concrete solutions that are rigorously tested, technically feasible, of optimal quality, and with a business perspective demonstrating a return on investment in very tight timeframes. Is it an easy task? No, but it’s precisely what they expect from us now.
Therefore, it’s imperative that we consolidate our position as strategic allies of the CSPs if we really want to help transform the industry. The ultimate challenge is to permeate this throughout the rest of the people working in the organizations. It’s a joint challenge where the medium-term vision must be clear and effective. As I said earlier, generally, only those who understand the landscape from the perspective of value contribution survive the changes, and those who survive change the market’s rules for the better. It’s just a matter of deciding which side you’re on: whether we’ll be observers or active participants in these changes. The rest will be what is considered in the future as making history…
Marcos Sitz, CBDO & Co-Founder at Iquall Networks