Playing safe used to mean running through a procurement process but, budgets allowing, going with the biggest or best-known vendor. But that thinking can prove far more dangerous now that disruptive newer players can be so far ahead of incumbents. Would you want to be known for buying a system out of date within a year?
The old adage that “Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM” made sense way back in the day when IBM had a reputation for only taking on projects they were confident they could over deliver on and where if issues arose they’d swallow the cost to make sure the job was done. But does that really apply today? I doubt anyone believes it does.
People have generally fallen into two camps: those that have the confidence to back what they believe to be the best option and those who ‘play safe’ and try at all costs to procure something they can justify later if it all goes wrong. But with so many examples of new players disrupting the established players in each sector that approach can be career limiting at best.
Take the learning platform space. It’s widely acknowledged that the large LMS platforms deliver a terrible learner experience and yet we have newcomers to the workforce with ever reduced tolerance for software that isn’t intuitive and enjoyable to use.
Would you want to be the decision maker who bought at the ‘top of the market’; who opted for old over new, legacy over innovative. Would you really want to be labelled as someone who tried to play safe and but ignored the obvious.
Why buy history when you can back the future?