White swans are the norm - Black swans are an opportunity
When unexpected events cause economies and capital markets to tumble, politicians, economists, and asset managers like to speak of a “black swan.” These animals are scarce and, therefore, also stand for improbable events in economic theory, which throw the familiar out of balance. I took the picture of the two black swans on the picture in Knysna, South Africa 2017, a beautiful place with amazing animals.
New York Professor Nassim Taleb once used the term in his book “The Black Swan. The power of highly improbable events”. Taleb uses the Thanksgiving Turkey to describe why expectations built on historical events can fail dramatically
Is the corona crisis a black swan?
The worldwide corona crisis shows us how vulnerable our complex globalized social and economic system with its interdependencies is. Suddenly we realize that global supply chains are suddenly disrupted, and we painfully note that in the just-in-time logic there are no capacity reserves and redundancies in the system.
Corona crisis in a vulnerable world
The lockdown in China is directly impacting global supply chains. Pure software companies are less exposed to supply chain disruptions, but remain at risk due to cascading economic effects.
Many companies have banned all “non-essential” travel and some have banned all international travel. While travel companies are directly impacted, all companies that depend on in-person meetings are being affected.
The mid term impact of the corona crisis
The corona crisis will keep the world busy for a long time, the exact effects cannot yet be estimated, but for the time after the crisis we should already now make up our minds not to simply go back to business as usual. Some companies have seen their growth rates drop sharply.
This corona crisis was a foreseeable event.
In a guest article for the “Neue Zürcher Zeitung” (NZZ), he and his co-author Mark Spitznagel explain why the corona crisis should by no means be considered a Black Swan event, “for which being unprepared is excusable. On the contrary: attentive readers of his book should know that a global pandemic is described as a white swan – “an event that will undoubtedly occur in the future.
The foreseeable market opportunity
The black swan event has killed the turkey – and it can stop your competitors´ ability to execute strategy. There are always significant risks in the business plan, and at the same time, a massive business opportunity for digital businesses prepared to shift their value proposition rapidly.
Cyber Security - the next battlefield
We must pay more attention to issues such as Cyber Defence. If you really need some inspiration watch “The Wolf” with Hollywood actor Christian Slater.
What does it need?
The opportunity lies in defining these scenarios and execution models before they occur. Search listening and social listening helps us understand when the time is right – and what we have to do. When the new event arrives, you can attack the market.