Lesson from Kodak

brand-as-business bit:  Phil Rosenthal‘s analysis of Eastman Kodak’s failure in yesterday’s Chicago Tribune is quite insightful — particularly in its juxtaposition of Kodak and R. R. Donnelley & Sons Co., the commercial printing company that’s been shedding its legacy and reinventing itself.  Most telling is the quote from Donnelley’s CEO and President Thomas J. Quinlan:

“The real trick is to not get wrapped up in evaluating individual technologies…For us, it’s: Where are the emerging trends, and how is that going to affect communications?”

This points to the importance of having a customer/market orientation vs. a technology one.  A successful path forward comes from focusing on what people are going to want to do, instead of which technology is best.

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