Mobile is the new epi­cen­ter of the brave new world that we’re now liv­ing in.

Just as peo­ple once thought that the earth was the cen­ter of the known uni­verse and later dis­cov­ered that it was the sun, you may have thought there was another cen­ter to busi­ness, but I’m here to tell you this: the cen­ter is, indeed, mobile. By 2016, the mobile Inter­net will become the dom­i­nant form of Inter­net access as peo­ple will use 1.5 bil­lion smart mobile devices.

Is your orga­ni­za­tion ready for this uni­ver­sal shift? Orga­ni­za­tions who are fully aware of the mobile epi­cen­ter are the busi­nesses that will con­tinue to lead. How can your orga­ni­za­tion gear “up for a world dom­i­nated by mobile devices, appli­ca­tions, cloud ser­vices, and increas­ing cus­tomer engage­ment and line of busi­ness tech­nol­ogy (LoB) pur­chas­ing dri­ven by mobility”?

In my first arti­cle in the mobile gov­er­nance series, I dis­cussed “3 Sim­ple Steps toward Cre­at­ing Mobile Dream Teams.” In the sec­ond part of the series, I will pro­vide a macro view of mobile for C-level audi­ences. From the bird’s eye view, or the top down, how would you say your orga­ni­za­tion is respond­ing to the world­wide expan­sion of mobile? The over­rid­ing ques­tion before us today is this: Is your orga­ni­za­tion mobile ded­i­cated or mobile defi­cient? If your answer puts you in the lat­ter cat­e­gory, don’t feel bad, you’re not alone. Today, I’ll cover some strate­gies that you can imple­ment to begin that jour­ney toward becom­ing a mobile ded­i­cated orga­ni­za­tion, capa­ble of man­ag­ing tech­nol­ogy and the consumer’s mobile mind­shift.

The Gov­ern­ment | Man­age Mobile Before the Revolt Happens

In the same way that poorly led gov­ern­ments can lead to revolt, poorly gov­erned mobile ini­tia­tives can lead to results that end in chaos. With­out great lead­er­ship noth­ing gets off the ground. I under­stand that your orga­ni­za­tion has silos, chal­lenges, and bud­get­ing con­cerns as it relates to mobile. This is a com­mon sce­nario for many busi­nesses that are try­ing to run Web, mobile, and social ini­tia­tives in par­al­lel. How­ever, there are ways around this. You must begin to gov­ern, to lead, so that mobile will become man­age­able and actionable.

In “Orga­niz­ing for Mobile Mar­ket­ing Suc­cess,” For­rester Research sug­gests that orga­ni­za­tions drop the “own­er­ship debate”—Who owns mobile: IT, mar­ket­ing, both?—which has been known to leave orga­ni­za­tions par­a­lyzed, and “focus on strat­egy, gov­er­nance, and exe­cu­tion: Decide which mobile skills are strate­gic; imple­ment mobile gov­er­nance beyond mar­ket­ing; and have a plan to acquire or develop mobile exper­tise to exe­cute mobile mar­ket­ing campaigns.”

Again, your focus is on strat­egy, gov­er­nance, and exe­cu­tion, not who owns mobile, who’s respon­si­ble, and paral­y­sis by analy­sis. The time to lead and gov­ern the mobile uni­verse is now, not next year or even next month. You don’t have time to wait.

Julie Ask, with For­rester Research, sur­veyed exec­u­tives about their com­pe­tency and matu­rity in mobile. Not sur­pris­ingly, mature orga­ni­za­tions have a well-defined mobile strat­egy and clearly under­stand that mobile can enable both dig­i­tal and offline chan­nels. Specif­i­cally, 88 per­cent of com­pa­nies with a mobile strat­egy for more than two years indi­cate that their “com­pany under­stands the impact mobile can have” on over­all suc­cess. So if you’re feel­ing as if your skills set and knowl­edge base in mobile is cur­rently defi­cient, how and where can you fill up on the knowl­edge that you lack?

The Play­ers | Get the Right Peo­ple Eat­ing, Sleep­ing, and Breath­ing Mobile

One way to become mobile ded­i­cated is through tal­ent acqui­si­tion. Obvi­ously, no one has the time or the energy to become an expert in every area. In par­tic­u­lar, a tech­nol­ogy area that is rapidly chang­ing and expand­ing such as mobile requires unique skill sets. Hir­ing some­one with mobile exper­tise can be a viable option to address knowl­edge gaps in an orga­ni­za­tion. How­ever, expect to com­pete aggres­sively for tal­ent because mobile experts with a blend of tech­nol­ogy and mar­ket­ing knowl­edge are not easy to find.

Next, ask your­self this: Who is your organization’s mobil­ity change agent? Change does not come eas­ily or quickly and it often requires a cat­a­lyst. Any closed sys­tem will remain in the same state unless an out­side force acts upon it. There­fore, you need an evan­ge­list for mobile, some­one who is bold and unafraid to speak about the great­ness, the good news, of mobile. The IDC argues that “oper­at­ing a lead­ing mobil­ity strat­egy is not easy, as it involves, among other things, sig­nif­i­cant cross-organization lead­er­ship, includ­ing com­mit­ment from many cor­ners of IT, the C-Suite and from core func­tions … IDC believes that gath­er­ing the nec­es­sary com­mit­ment requires a key change agent in the firm who under­stands mobil­ity and can evan­ge­lize its strate­gic impor­tance to the business.”

Who is this per­son? If you’re read­ing this blog, it may very well be you. Or it may be some­one at a higher level within your orga­ni­za­tion. The point is you need to iden­tify your organization’s mobil­ity change agent as soon as possible.

The Struc­ture | Mobile Cen­ters of Excellence

One of the most effec­tive ways to bet­ter gov­ern mobile is through the cre­ation of mobile cen­ters of excel­lence (MoCe). Many mobile mature orga­ni­za­tions have set up MoCe to guide ini­tia­tives through­out the orga­ni­za­tion, to cen­tral­ize strat­egy and stan­dards, to estab­lish best prac­tices, and more. For­rester notes that “qual­ity con­trol will also be under the purview of this group, as it selects the most rel­e­vant projects to imple­ment and makes sure they offer dif­fer­en­ti­ated cus­tomer expe­ri­ences and serve cor­po­rate objec­tives.” For­rester found that “mobile cen­ters of excel­lence are not yet the norm,” but research is show­ing that they need to be.

Mobile | The New Epi­cen­ter of Business

In clos­ing, don’t for­get that the cen­ter of the uni­verse is not the Earth, but the Sun. The cen­ter of busi­ness is no longer the sta­tion­ary desk­top PC, but mobile devices. Accept this real­ity and act in response to the truth. It truly is a brave new world.

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