What Smartphones Can Teach Businesses About Change Management

The iPhone 5S has recently been launched. Despite the variety of options available to people – including stiff competition from Android – 31% of iPhone users say they’ll upgrade. So why do people keep buying more and more smartphones? And what can the rapid and ongoing adoption of smartphones teach businesses about change and encouraging people to adapt to change?


Whether you’re an Apple fan or not, the fact remains that smartphones keep getting smarter and we keep buying more of them. In fact, smartphones have the fastest adoption rate in tech history. After their 2007 introduction, it took only five years to reach 50% market penetration.


Why smartphones are so popular:

1)          Smartphones are helpful. Genuinely helpful

2)          They stand on the backs of giant technological breakthroughs that underpin their usefulness

3)          Constant improvement is the name of the game – and the various updates to technology and software are never ending

4)          There is good market competition which, in turn, drives faster innovation (the Android-Windows war)

5)          They beat boredom – one of our modern-day ills

6)          They connect people in new ways

7)          They embrace true multimedia

8)          They give people freedom of choice (what tools to use, what apps to download, and so much more)

9)          They can be used to blur the boundaries between work and pleasure – making smartphones acceptable in both spheres

10)       They are compact and portable


So what can smartphones teach businesses about change management?


Clever, helpful smartphone technology has already won our loyalty, which is why the smartphone is commonplace in many of our lives. Think about it: just about everything has a mobile app these days – from knowing when to put out your bins to submitting your expenses while you’re travelling.


But change doesn’t happen overnight. Apple didn’t launch the first phone without an extensive advertising campaign. They had to build the change into the process of adopting smartphone technology (think of their TV campaign that explained ‘there’s an app for that’, which is now an everyday phrase).



It’s all about winning our hearts and minds, then keeping them


The lesson that smartphones can teach businesses most of all, is that when it comes to making any change – to processes, policies or tools – people need to see the benefits to believe them. Moreover, there’s value in winning hearts and minds: to ensure that big changes are accepted and that they stick.


So when it comes to getting your employees to change their behaviour – whether you want them to eat fewer free biscuits, or use a new expenses tool – don’t try and do it all at once; but provide enough genuine, helpful features to make using the new tool a ‘no-brainer’. Maybe that’s the best lesson we can learn from smartphones.




Got any more ideas about what businesses learn from smartphones? Give us your thoughts below…



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