I gave my keynote on How Technology is Transforming Business for Australian Institute of Company Directors this morning here in Beijing.
Based on the responses of the 500+ company directors in the audience, they absolutely understand the need for change. Here are their answers on audience response units to questions I posed during my presentation.
One of my key messages was that social and technological change are inextricable – they drive each other and cannot be understood separately. What is interesting is that directors felt that social drivers are more important than technology drivers. Certainly I believe that social change is moving at least as fast as technological change, and responding to this is fundamental to the success of organizations.
This result shows that directors clearly recognize not just the increasing pace of change, but the fact that it is accelerating. I am surprised and encouraged by the degree to which they acknowledge this.
The message is clear: directors recognize the importance of risk-taking and driving innovation, and understand that governance is a fundamental tool in helping companies to transform themselves. That does not make it easy to do, particularly given the demands of the compliance regimes in most developed countries. However the opportunity is to integrate governance for risk control and governance for innovation, to drive the high-performance organizations of the future.
It heartening and exciting to see these responses. If these attitudes flow through to action, it is very encouraging for the future of corporate Australia. I hope that these responses reflect the attitudes of company directors in other countries. However if they don’t, then that suggests a massive opportunity for Australian companies.