The Economist explores the defining feature of the latest innovation revolution - breakneck speed! Companies are being forced to raise their corporate metabolism and overcome “analysis paralysis”, an affliction caused by top managers having pored over the same irrelevant case studies at business school.
The crisis has emboldened managers to move faster and to try out risky new ideas on larger groups of customers. As the boss of a Fortune 500 firm recently put it, “We are learning more by testing than [from] months spent [with] analysts and endless meetings.” Despite a worldwide retail apocalypse, Nike saw global internet sales of its sporting goods rise by over a third in the three months to February, thanks to a deft digital pivot inspired by its early covid-19 experience in China. Engagement with its Chinese online offering grew by triple digits in January and February, year on year, as consumers shared workouts through WeChat and other social media. Its sweat-inducing masterclass is being streamed more than 800,000 times a week on YouTube.