In 1960, Theodore Levitt, a professor at Harvard Business School, coined the term ““Marketing is myopic” In his famous article With the same name. He warned that the companies that have it are too large Being interested in existing products and markets exposes you to the risk of failure in the long term. This term, which is no less relevant today, can also be used to explain “innovation myopia,” whereby companies limit themselves to small improvements rather than groundbreaking innovations—such as big successes.
Examples from Norwegian businesses show that AI and innovation can go hand in hand to create entirely new solutions. Cognite, a technology company revolutionizing the industry with digital twin technology. Gelato, a platform that simplifies global print production. AutoStore developed new storage and picking system technology, and Vipps offered customers a simple, mobile-based payment method. Examples show that these leaders are customer focused by using AI technology to launch services that customers did not know they wanted or provide the market with solutions that were not previously possible.
Avoiding innovation myopia is about having a vision for innovation that goes beyond what is obvious today. It challenges the organization to look forward and break the bonds that limit creativity. The consequences of innovative myopia can be devastating. Companies that cannot think big and innovate risk losing market share to bolder competitors. They may also miss out on new opportunities and growth, and eventually exit the market. Managers who adopt AI primarily to produce the same goods and services as they always have, but at lower costs, tend to be short-sighted in innovation.
To avoid diagnosis, managers must balance two worlds – operation and innovation. Forward-minded managers will use AI to increase efficiency and maintain adequate customer satisfaction while developing a “moon”-oriented management philosophy—one that looks beyond what customers can express as needs. History shows that companies that stagnate or decline have one thing in common: the cause often lies in management that has become too myopic in its mindset – too concerned with efficiency and cost-cutting rather than innovation and market-related development.
The government’s investment in AI research deserves applause and represents an important step towards a more innovative future. A future where AI is a natural part of companies’ business model, how they create, deliver, communicate and capture value. It may be useful to recall that among the ten most valuable companies in the world, eight are digital platform companies that rely on data and artificial intelligence.
Now it is up to researchers and companies to develop and use AI technology to create and capture value in ways that were previously out of reach – something that could not be done before. One thing is certain. AI will not cause companies or jobs to disappear, but companies and employees who do not use AI will be replaced by those who do.
The record was first published in Tor W. Andreassen’s newsletter “Food for Thought”.
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