Everyone has made a wish list of one flavor or another, especially now with the festive season and new year fast approaching. I have one of my own, that has nothing to do with Santa’s benevolence tied with having been a good CEO this past twelve months or new year resolutions to be home by every day. My list touches on people and organizations that I think would help advance valuable tech deployments and innovation in 2013.
First one up is government, where with elections coming up everyone seems preoccupied with ensuring they are back in office. Once in the dust settles, it is my hope those charged with various offices will move with speed to implement the numerous rapid results initiatives – RRI’s that have stagnated due to lack of internal buy-in or focus. The private sector players invested in these initiatives do get tired of waiting especially where the investments made will take time to recoup. These RRI’s will show us both – government and private sector, where we can go ahead and pump more resources as we will have seen where greatest benefit can be achieved in line with different project objectives; let Konza simmer and focus on some quick wins.
Next up are marketers, from the C level executives to the agencies paid to extend brand presence and push product. We need to see bolder campaigns that test the capabilities of available technology. We have seen a “toe in the pool” approach when it comes to innovation and this will never cause a splash, and the edge that you are looking for will be elusive in perpetuity. Organizations such as the Mobile Marketing Association which has an East African chapter posses a wealth of knowledge to jumpstart you.
Mobile operators feature on my list with a call to be more adaptable to new business models and allow for multiple modes of service delivery, based on international standards of course. I have had the experience of an idea being put on the back burner by multiple operators in the region with what comes across as an excuse – we currently don’t have a model to support your service. Many times, innovation is an orphan, you need to make a home for it; after all your bottom-line will be thankful for it.
I would like to see financial institutions bridge funding gap that currently exists in early stage financing. I am sure the actuaries who developed the models that made the bottom of the pyramid super profitable can conjure up a model that looks at the current ecosystem and develop a product that will see more startups and upstarts get better market traction. Project based and growth financing is in my opinion a low hanging fruit that can be tweaked for the IT based sector.
A very practical and achievable list, now we wait and see