The pace of change in the market is accelerating at a pace that is overwhelming many organizations due to the combination of technology, social networking and the entry and expansion of millennials in the marketplace.  This acceleration of change requires a robust process to sense and respond to the change in a continuous manner so that you do not fall behind in meeting the demands.  The importance of a maintaining a process that continuously monitors and alerts to changing demands cannot be highlighted enough in addition, this process must include your extended partners along with customers that interact with all of your extended partners.  Maintenance and support of these relationships are more important than ever now to support the process and methods required to sense and respond to changing demands.


In these circumstances require enhanced and extended collaboration across your extended partners and especially with the entire chain of customers in order to maintain your place and succeed in the changing market.  You must develop and provide a technical social framework for this interaction that encourages and supports collaboration at the point where and when it is most conducive and convenient to the partners.  Innovation and changes do not manifest in a schedule and there must be an open framework that encourages interaction and collaboration at the point and time when convenient or when the idea strikes.  You must be able to support collaboration and interaction based on your customer and partner schedules and you must realize that your customers and partners will be in different areas of the world and different timezones. 


Amazon does an amazing job of sensing and responding to customer and partner changing demands in their multidimensional framework that brings together customers purchasing products, partners selling products, manufacturers producing products and carriers delivering products.  This entire framework is maintained in a customer centric foundation that provides a means and the opportunities for all participants to obtain information and then respond to the information.  Amazon acts as both a guide and referee in this framework to ensure the voice of the customer remains the focus.  This, I think, is a key critical success factor for the continued success of the Amazon marketplace.  Another critical success factor is the culture of experimentation and encouragement to change that drives Amazon’s interaction with customers, partners and internal cross functional interactions.  The Amazon difference here is the focus on the customer experience rather than the benefits to the Amazon bottom line.    


I see that it is important to provide a platform for collaboration and social interaction supporting all partners and customers, however the customer focus is the ingredient that energizes and allows you to succeed.  Amazon has the methods exactly right in this market, in fact I would say that they are key to changing the market and the integration expectations and demands. 


And now for the audience participation portion of the show…

ECommerce will have wide ranging impacts on both the retail and manufacturing sectors.  How can you focus these abilities to improve the consumer's experience?  Improving the consumer’s experience will require a re-evaluation of the sales channels, the manufacturing channels and practices and the supply chain channels and practices from the raw materials to the consumers’ homes.  In order to ensure and maintain success in this new reality you must harness the tools and capabilities in many new areas.  How can you support these continuously changing requirements?