The biggest theme of today’s discussions at the CIO Insurance Summit was the advantages of embracing change. One of today’s workshop presenters talked about the choice they faced when the realized that their associates had actively embraced a social networking platform without official authorization. The platform they were using was not the company’s strategic choice for a collaboration platform, but rather than clamp down, the company decided to take advantage of their employees’ enthusiasm and let them develop social networking behaviors and practices that they could then leverage when their strategic platform was ready to launch.
At the closing panel on innovation, we discussed the importance of tolerating failure, adapting to realtime feedback, and being open to unexpected outcomes. As an example, an initiative that one company undertook purely as a customer retention play ending up delivering great advantages in customer acquisition as well, even though they never would have put that in their business case.
Another major theme of the whole event was the importance and increased frequency of communication. From adopting agile, iterative development methodologies to encouraging internal collaboration and participating in two-way conversations with customers, an increased volume of interactions is leading to closer alignment and better decision making, whether it’s between business & IT, different elements within the business, or (most importantly) between business and its customers.
Overall, I felt there were some great discussions and opportunities to learn from each other. Looking forward to next year!