May’s blogs and articles worth reading


Every month, we share interesting articles on our LinkedIn profiles. This month, we read about the relationship between productivity and efficiency, a debate on how banks use digital to become the trusted companies during crisis, why some SMBs are doing very well adopting digital (and why some aren’t), and that if you are still relying on traditional risk management, you don’t know your risks anymore.


SMBs should focus on efficiency and productivity at the same time – HBR

How can small and mid-size companies improve their cash flow in challenging times? They should focus on both efficiency and productivity, says this Harvard Business Review article:

“The trick is to make them work together, rather than have the pursuit of one handicap the other. Ours and members’ experience shows that growth and efficiency can be allies, not antagonists. Properly managed, the push for efficiency can free up capital and direct it to where it will create revenue, generate strategic growth options, and increase enterprise value.”

Sounds great, so why don’t companies do this? They tend to focus on cutting costs when they should be pursuing both. The article offers some advice, based on an actual use case:

  • Differentiate between strategic and transactional customers
  • Look closer at how much working capital you have
  • Take the chance to be creative about post-pandemic improvised solutions


Tech and Trust – Bank execs debate the sector’ emerging relevance

The UK Sunday Times published an interesting discussion between executives from several large banks, debating the sector’s future. Technology features heavily in the discussion, including gems such as this:

“If you, as a bank, cannot offer that connectivity or application programming interface (API) capability, you will be like a town the railroad missed out, and you will weaken and die.”

The chat also tackles new risks for banks, and it’s clear that customer data is now a primary focal point for the financial industry:

“The debate about vaccine passports has dominated the news recently, showing that the ethics of handling customer data is no longer a horizon risk. As banks, we are grappling with the same challenges: we know if we use data-driven insights, we can make better business decisions and we can improve the way we serve our clients. But what is the tipping point?”

It’s a quick but fascinating read!


Research: younger SMB owners are using digital to drive their success

A picture is slowly emerging of how small and medium businesses responded to the pandemic by leveraging digital systems. Tech companies including Wix (websites) and Netgear (network equipment) reported jumps in their earnings because of more interest from SMBs to improve their digital chops.

According to new research, many SMBs are digitising because their founders are younger. Click on the link below to see how the tides are changing and why SMBs are more focused on digitising themselves. I’ll add this tidbit on why some SMBs did much more poorly in the survey:

“Their problem? That 25% did not change their business model during the pandemic. They failed to do any of the following:

  • Close their brick and mortar permanently or temporarily
  • Run or host online events
  • Offer a subscription service
  • Target a different audience,
  • Creating or sell goods pandemic-related goods
  • Sell in an online marketplace
  • Update their website. “

As an SMB and Salesforce partner, thryve has both the understanding and means to help digitise your business. So if you want to get ahead, get in touch!


Traditional risk management should be retired – Riskonnect CEO

If you are still handling risk management in the traditional way, you have a problem, writes Riskonnect’s CEO, Jim Wetekamp, in this Forbes column:

“How at risk are you? That is the question everyone is asking, but it’s extremely difficult to answer if you are set up to manage risk by type, departmental responsibility or whether or not it is insurable. In the real world, risk cuts across all areas of business. You must be able to see the full scope of what you’re dealing with to understand how at risk you are.”

How can you develop that fuller scope? He describes three places to start: break down your silos, break your risk systems, and break your risk mindset. Provocative? Yes. But necessary? Definitely.