What has changed and what has not changed. Future known changes. And those we don’t know about yet. The world’s current state of uncertainty has created enough anxiety in the C-suites that analysts are being replaced with fortunetellers.
Wow! We made it to December! Time flew as many of us wanted 2020 to go by as fast as possible. And we did it. Now we look forward to a good — or at least a better — 2021. We have so many things to catch up on, so many places to visit, and so many business models to fine-tune…
The best way to do all those things, at least in our industry, is through face-to-face, in-person meetings and live markets. Not at conferences, seminars, or lectures. Enough with talk. Let’s now move into action.
As we all know, the entertainment industry is changing. It has not yet completely changed, but it is getting there, and we need to physically interact in order to figure out the best ways to deal with the changes.
There are a number of elements that have not changed when it comes to the entertainment industry. Among them are production creativity, the need to advertise, the need for content, and the need for face-to-face meetings.
What has changed, in the meanwhile, are production financing methods, adver-tising strategies, content re-quirements, and a reduced number of face-to-face meetings between industry execs.
We also have to deal with a return to the past. The U.S. TV industry was formed and continues to be shaped by hardware companies (see RCA, GE, and now Comcast with NBCUniversal; Sony with Columbia; and AT&T with WarnerMedia). Soon, tech companies will extend their reaches to many other TV entities.
The past is also reflected in the consolidation trend, in the creation of dominant positions, and in reduced regulations. Under these conditions, it is difficult to talk about evolution.
The future — mainly represented by streaming technology and services — combined with past practices, is causing confusion never before seen at corporate levels.
No C-suite is free from anxiety.
If we look back at the times when the TV industry was concentrated into a few entities, we’ll see that the challenge for them was how to best leverage a single technology. And when technology began offering more options, new companies came along to satisfy them (thanks to regulations that reduced concentrations of power). In those years, salaries were relatively low, generating more job opportunities and mo-bility for executives, which made managers less afraid to take chances.
Nowadays, corporations find themselves with the same concentrated power of many years ago, but with many more technological options that are causing confusion, insecurity, anxiety, and indecisiveness (they call it “disruption”). However, corporate executives cannot openly show their fears, or they’d risk losing out on huge paydays. And because of mergers and acquisitions, top positions are not easy to come by.
Corporations must instead rely on surveys, statistics, and predictions in order to deal with all of those challenges. Expect C-suites to start hiring fortunetellers, tarot card readers, and astrologers any day now.
(By Dom Serafini)
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