AIESEC @ European Business Summit 2014: The Digital Era: A New Business Frontier

aiesec logo

Written by Babajide Okusanya, National Director of Marketing & Communications of AIESEC Belgium

Babajide Okusanya

Babajide Okusanya, National Director of Marketing & Communications of AIESEC Belgium

We are at the start of the 21st century and technology is evolving faster than we could imagine; driving innovation in all facets of the life – from basic everyday activities to space exploration – technology is fuelling humanity’s progress and growth. All ages – from toddlers to retirees – have access to technology that makes information more accessible than ever before. A combination of hardware, software and internet proliferation has paved the way to the rise to the digital era; which not only makes information accessible but accessible anywhere. The seeds that led to this were set decades ago after the invention of the first electronic computer, the first personal computer, the first graphical user interface operating system, the first nodes connected to the internet, the evolution of communication technologies and the first mobile phones.

If we take a snapshot of this century, there are quite a number of revelations to note. One of which is the empowerment of start-ups. Start-ups are now able to create digital solutions for everyday problems with a strong business model to be able to power it.

Not just start-ups but existing business, NGOs, SMEs and MNEs are capitalizing on the perks of the digital era. By optimising communication channels, organisations are able to drive efficiency through intranets, network-based software and local or cloud servers. Business meetings have evolved as well making it possible to have a board meeting with executives from across the globe simultaneously and seamlessly. For a global organisation like ours where we have stakeholders from across 124 countries, coordinating a virtual meeting is more essential now than ever. We are able to organise a joint conference call that connects all of our country presidents.

Communication is one major perk from this era, another is data storage. Gone are the days when losing one document could cause a huge blow for an organisation. Now businesses invest in data centres and cloud storage to ensure they maintain confidentiality, integrity and availability of their data regardless of disasters or unforeseen circumstances which might occur. With the growing need for mobility and accessibility of businesses and organisations, cloud storage has been growing to meet these needs to provide remote access to data through multiple devices.

As mentioned earlier, there is a growing need for mobility and accessibility which has been made possible by smaller and simpler devices capable of connecting to the internet and carrying out the same level of operations as a desktop computer if not more. It is now possible to have wrist-watches capable of checking emails and organising calendars, or laptops that are as thin as 5mm. This changes behaviours and cultures of organisations and the capabilities of its human resource even beyond the office environment. This even poses a question as to whether a physical office is needed in the first place. There are business in Europe alone that are being run from virtual offices where staff are capable of working anywhere that is suitable for them at any particular point in time.

There are still numerous of organisations in Europe that are unable to capitalize on the opportunities the digital era offers. One core reason to this the fear of implementing technologies that affect business processes; the saying “If it’s not broken, why fix it?” comes into the scene. There are businesses that have been running operations the same way and still having loyal customers and growing. A simple change by placing their operations online and automating processes can increase results tremendously making it possible for customers to be able to access the products and services offered in a very convenient manner. This can be achieved through a simple website/web application, an online payment system and social media pages to facilitate B2B and B2C interactions. Businesses that are able to have this shift done are able to grow in profit, reduce costs and increase customer-base.

Every day, technology opens a new door for business practices, cultures, partnerships and opportunities. The digital era is breaking down barriers that have been faced by businesses for centuries, making the world smaller and more efficient and making it possible to optimise the implementation of resources to yield the best results. Technology is not to be feared but embraced; technology is evolving so fast that “understanding technology and being able to control it as fundamental as being able to read and write” as said by Ryan Carson (Co-Founder of Team Treehouse). On this note, I highly encourage businesses to capitalize on technology, evolve business processes and share good-case practices to drive growth.

About the Author

Babajide Okusanya is a Nigerian and has a background and experience in Information Technology. He was a panellist at the IT West Africa Leaders’ Summit in November 2013 where he interacted with start-ups, multinational governments interested in driving technological growth in the African continent. He is a youth activist currently in Belgium as the National Director of Marketing and Communications for the national office of AIESEC. For the past 5 years, he has been working with AIESEC by delivering trainings, managing projects, organising and attending conferences, building partnerships, developing IT systems, developing marketing and PR strategies in Africa, Europe and Asia. 

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

China Unlimited: an exclusive interview with the former Ambassador of Hungary to China

Healthcare workers’ safety: a forgotten necessity

Understanding the ‘second brain’ in your gut

5 things to know about the exploding world of pro gaming

First EU-wide protection for whistle-blowers agreed

The EU has to prove it can remain one piece

These 8 countries have perfect scores for women’s rights at work

International Women’s Day: Where does she belong?

Africa-Europe Alliance: European Commission committed to a sustainable African agri-food sector

4 things ISPs can do to reduce the impact of cybercrime

Trump ‘used’ G20 to side with Putin and split climate and trade packs

State aid: Commission opens in-depth investigation into arbitration award in favour of Antin to be paid by Spain

Vile act of torture prohibited ‘under all circumstances’, UN chief affirms on International Day to support victims

3 ways to ensure the internet’s future is creative, collaborative and fair

This lethal fungus is threatening to wipe out the world’s bananas

EU food watchdog: more transparency, better risk prevention

New rules on drivers’ working conditions and fair competition in road transport

Help African farmers cope with climate change threats, UN food agency urges

Why cybersecurity matters more than ever during the coronavirus pandemic

Europe eyes to replace US as China’s prime foreign partner

3 ways to make technologies more inclusive for people with disabilities

Confidence in the COVID-19 vaccine grows in UK and US, but global concerns about side effects are on the rise

Preventing and resolving conflicts must form ‘backbone’ of collective efforts – UN chief

UPDATED: Thousands flee fighting around Libyan capital as Guterres condemns escalation, urges ‘immediate halt’ to all military operations

How emerging markets will shape Africa in 2020

5 factors driving the Chinese lawtech boom

This tool shows you which cities will flood as ice sheets melt

High-tech or ‘high-touch’: UK survey gives clues to the jobs of the future

Security Council urges ‘maximum restraint’ around Gulf region as Iran and United States trade diplomatic blows in New York

EU Parliament says ‘no’ to austerity budget

ISIS fighters fleeing Mosul for Syria can topple Assad. Why did the US now decide to uproot them from Iraq?

China and China-EU Relations in the New Era

5 things you might not know about forests – but should

More hiring freedom can reduce teacher shortages in disadvantaged areas

When it comes to envirotech adoption, NGOs can lead us out of the woods

‘Extinction crisis’ pushes countries to agree stronger protection for global wildlife

Why we need both science and humanities for a Fourth Industrial Revolution education

The digital transformation is a skills and education opportunity for all. Companies must use it

European Commission increases support for the EU’s beekeeping sector

Building a Climate-Resilient Future – A new EU Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change

The UK option: An overarching alternative for the whole Brexit options

‘The time for action is now’ senior UN peacekeeping official says, urging support for regional force combating Sahel terrorism

Mediterranean migrant drownings should spur greater action by European countries, urge UN agencies

Carbon levy on EU imports needed to raise global climate ambition

Iran: women hunger strikers entitled to medical care, UN rights experts urge

It is now the era to evolve mutually as the bacteria do

COVID-19: Revised rules to encourage banks to lend to companies and households

Fashion’s hot new trend: clothes you don’t need to wash (very often)

Stronger partnerships with post-conflict countries needed to ensure ‘path towards durable peace’: UN chief

Republic of Korea President proposes DMZ as future ‘peace and cooperation district’ on Peninsula

Women’s work faces the greatest risk of automation, says new research

May led Britain to chaos, now looks for way out with unpredictable DUP

We must rethink and repurpose cybersecurity for the COVID-19 era

EU-Turkey relations: EU considers imposing sanctions while Turkey keeps violating Cyprus’ sovereignty

National parks give a $6 trillion boost to mental health worldwide

Here’s how data can shine a light on financial crime

Will Eurozone be able to repay its debts? Is a bubble forming there?

Eight years in, Syria still embroiled in conflict ‘that no longer sparks outrage’, Security Council hears

Difficulties of vaccination against COVID-19

Services are the hidden side of the US-China trade war

More Stings?

Comments

  1. When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added”
    checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get several emails with the
    same comment. Is there any way you can remove me from
    that service? Thanks!

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s