George Colony

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The CIO's Second Agenda

George Colony June 30, 2014

In addition to managing the IT agendas of their companies, CIOs must build a second agenda of Business Technology (systems, technology, and processes to win, serve, and retain customers). The IT agenda focuses internally on supply chains, financial systems, and administrative technology. These are all critical — most corporations would stop in minutes without IT. […]

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The Forrester Summer Reading List

George Colony June 24, 2014

Last week I had the Forrester Board of Clients in town. As part of our great dinner discussion, I asked each client to name their favorite book of the moment. Here’s their recommended list: Who Owns the Future  Jaron Lanier’s diatribe against Google, Facebook and other “siren servers.” Path to Power  Maggie Thatcher’s rise to […]

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Satya Nadella Must Drag Microsoft Into the Age of the Customer

George Colony March 3, 2014

Microsoft’s new CEO, Satya Nadella, must take three actions to make the company relevant in the Age of the Customer: 1) Attack mobile. Customers are undergoing a mobile mind shift — an expectation that they can get any information or service on any device at any time wherever they may be. Nadella must establish Microsoft […]

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Davos 2014

George Colony January 28, 2014

Here are my thoughts from the 2014 World Economic Forum in Davos… 1) I always go to Davos with a quick poll to ask my fellow attendees. This year my question was: “Is Edward Snowden a traitor or a hero?” 32 attendees voted “traitor” while 21 voted “hero.” Europeans and young people tended more to […]

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Davos Panel: The New Digital Context

George Colony January 22, 2014

Here at the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, I moderated a CEO discussion on “The New Digital Context” (video below). Thank you to my panelists Marissa Mayer (Yahoo), Marc Benioff (salesforce.com), John Chambers (Cisco), Randall Stephenson (AT&T), and Gavin Patterson (BT). We are in the age of the customer, where technology is dramatically […]

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What Questions Would You Ask At Davos?

George Colony January 13, 2014

I am moderating a panel at the World Economic Forum in Davos in two weeks. The title is:  “The New Digital Context — What societal, economic and technological forces are shaping the digital landscape?” The panelists are: Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, John Chambers, CEO of Cisco, Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo, Randall Stephenson, CEO […]

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Best Of 2013

George Colony December 23, 2013

As we all head off into the New Year, I wanted to look back at what I consider to be the  “Best of…” for 2013. Note that the following is based entirely on my personal opinions — it is not grounded in Forrester’s research or formal positions. Here’s what I liked from 2013, in no […]

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Your Opportunity in the Age of the Customer

George Colony December 11, 2013

The age of the customer is a 20-year business cycle in which the most successful companies will reinvent themselves to systematically understand and serve increasingly powerful customers. Re-engineering your company to become customer-obsessed will be hard work, but savvy C-level executives I’ve been speaking with about this tectonic shift immediately grasp the opportunity. I spoke […]

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Tech Management In The Age Of The Customer

George Colony October 10, 2013

We are now in the age of the customer, with buyers using technology to gain control over institutions. That power flows from customers’ newfound ability to seamlessly price, critique, and direct their purchases. What does this mean? At the risk of being overly dramatic, the future belongs to customer-obsessed enterprises. All of this holds many […]

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Microsoft: Return Of The Jedi

George Colony August 28, 2013

Every 10 years or so, a company in the technology industry that appears to be dead, dying, or stagnant makes an amazing turnaround. In 1980, it was Intel; buried by the Japanese in the dynamic memory business, it reinvented itself as a microprocessor company. In the 1990s, it was IBM — saved from breakup-hungry investment […]

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10 Things The CEO Can Do To Drive Digital

George Colony June 14, 2013

Forrester held its European Business Technology Forum in London this week — a convocation of CIOs, Enterprise Architects, Infrastructure and Operations Professionals, Security and Risk Professionals, and Sourcing and Vendor Management Professionals. Lots of great connections were made in London, as per the pic on the left. On Monday night I hosted a working dinner […]

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Apple's Folding Future

George Colony April 2, 2013

Ever wonder what’s going to happen next in smartphones? After the conservative iPhone 5 and the relentless and surprising onslaught of Samsung, it’s clear that Apple’s next move in the space will have to be revolutionary. Ennui has seeped into the minds of some Apple faithful as they have become bored with their phones, and […]

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The CEO And The Salesforce

George Colony March 5, 2013

In 2011 I asked 12 of the top tech CEOs if their salesforces were getting their companies to their strategic goals. The CEOs had scathing feedback — their salesforces were behind the curve, low IQ, lacking the confidence to call at a high level, unsystematic, and stuck in low growth. It wasn’t pretty. At Davos […]

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Davos 2013

George Colony January 30, 2013

I have arrived home from the multi-layered onion that is Davos, aka The World Economic Forum. Here’s what I learned from the sessions, hallway conversations, head of state speeches, late dinners, early-morning breakfasts, and serendipitous encounters. Optimism about the economy was running hot — especially when it came to the U.S. Budding energy independence and […]

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The Mobile War

George Colony October 15, 2012

CEOs should be aware of an approaching tech war — because its outcome is going to change their customers. As the Web becomes the AM radio of digital, the mobile App Internet will rise. This market will be dominated by two or three ecosystems — semi-closed worlds built on a closely fitting set of apps, phones, tablets, computers, […]

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Enterprise Architects For Dummies (CEOs)

George Colony August 27, 2012

Do you want your strategies to succeed? You’ll need the gentleman on the left. He designs your business. As Dave Baker of PwC notes, “A business without a design is one that is likely to be overly complex, expensive, inefficient and unaligned.” Or as Raja Musunuru, from Gaylord Entertainment Company, says, “It’s the difference between the […]

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Interactive Marketers For Dummies (CEOs)

George Colony May 30, 2012

The person to the left is your Interactive Marketer. Never heard of her? She works for your Chief Marketing Officer — here’s what she does for you and your company… 1) She knows how to reach your next big market — the Always Addressable Customer. One in three US adults is always addressable — meaning they own […]

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Apple = Sony

George Colony April 25, 2012

Apple will decline in the post Steve Jobs era. Here’s why. Sociologist Max Weber created a typology of organizations in his 1947 book The Theory of Social and Economic Organization. He described three categories: 1) Legal/bureaucratic (think IBM or the U.S. government), 2) Traditional (e.g., the Catholic Church) and 3) Charismatic (run by special, magical individuals). […]

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Facebook Bought Instagram To Bolster Its App Internet Ecosystem

George Colony April 10, 2012

Facebook bought the no-revenue, 12-employee, 15-month-old Instagram for $1B yesterday. While on the surface this may appear to be a low-IQ, or perhaps no-IQ acquisition, there is a compelling reason for Facebook to own the photosocial site. The App Internet is approaching — an architecture of powerful applications resident on phones, tablets, PCs, and other […]

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14 Things I Learned At Davos 2012

George Colony March 6, 2012

This was my eleventh trip to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. My posts from the last few years can be found here:  2011, 2010. This year felt more subdued and fearful than the last few — a pall cast by the continually roiling European debt crisis. While caution emanated from the economy, hope […]

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