There are two answers.
One – “do we want to or do we need to?” That’s really the starting point.
If companies really want to, and they have a strategy, a structure, a team, capabilities and funding in place, they have a much higher chance for success. If it is a company that has to, it’s probably too late already. They will suffer a really hard time, because they’ll probably be downsizing while also doing this.
As Jack Ma of Alibaba he has a quote says, “I like to fix the roof on sunny days”. You should be doing business model innovation as a natural part of running the company, not when you’re thrown in a stressful and negative situation.
Two – “Do you have a mandate to experiment and try new things?”.
What Holger and I find is that people are very busy.
“We’re not allowed to do it, we can’t do it, nobody has the time and resources to do it.”
If you have zero capacity for experiment and testing new things, then nothing can happen.
If we look at Malaysia, it’s interesting to see what the majority of companies are planning to do in the coming years — are they planning to stay in Malaysia and try to defend the market position that they have, run their legacy business and shield the way from global competition? That’s a rather passive reactive strategy to take.
Or are they actively expanding to new products, services, markets, geographies and partnerships? And of course, business models that’ll take them into entirely new areas where they’ll need new skills and capabilities?
We haven’t seen all that many Malaysian companies go on shopping sprees for startups or doing stuff that’s outside of Malaysia. It’s happening, but ideally it’d be good to see more of that — faster global growth coming out of Malaysian companies.