Nokia’s downfall was largely due to its inability to recognise the threat posed by disruptive technologies and adapt accordingly, according to Quy Huy, INSEAD Professor of Strategy. Despite being a market leader in the mobile phone industry, Nokia failed to respond effectively to the introduction of smartphones. It lacked the strategic flexibility to shift from its successful past and embrace the future, resulting in its eventual decline.

Huy suggests that companies should foster emotional and social intelligence among their leaders to avoid similar fates. Emotional intelligence allows leaders to connect with employees, fostering a culture of trust and open communication. This can lead to the identification of potential threats and opportunities in the market earlier. Social intelligence, on the other hand, helps leaders to understand and influence collective behaviours, enabling them to steer their organisations towards necessary changes.

In addition, Huy highlights the importance of middle managers in organisational change. They act as a bridge between the top management and the frontline employees, translating strategic decisions into operational actions. Therefore, their buy-in is crucial for successful change implementation.

In conclusion, Huy’s insights suggest that recognising disruptive technologies, fostering emotional and social intelligence among leaders, and securing middle managers’ buy-in are key to surviving in today’s fast-changing business environment.

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