Software Pulse

Business Strategy for Software Executives

July 24, 2006

CK Prahalad

Innovation through Co-Creation

The next era of business needs will require software vendors to work together with their customers in order to deliver business value and innovation.

By Dr. CK Prahalad

Innovation has long been the cornerstone of the software industry. Yet today, few customers would venture to call their enterprise software vendors "innovative."

The reason is that most software vendors have gained a reputation of being slow moving and intractable in their business methods. This perception holds true even as innovative technologies, business models and processes are taking hold throughout the software business.

Today, enterprises are changing the ways they think about innovation in their business. That's why software vendors need to change as well - in order to support their customers better.

By working closely with their customers, software vendors can co-create value and deliver innovation that will form the basis for a competitive advantage and mutual success.


News Update: Rivals Take Aim

Ouch! Look what Marc Benioff of said about Microsoft's new CRM efforts. Plus, Oracle and Accenture set their sights on SOA, and VCs move towards open source after recording a massive quarter of fundraising. Read these stories and more software news of the week in the weekly news summary.

Give Small Vendors a Chance!

S. SadagopanThe current rampant consolidation and industry domination wielded by the largest enterprise software vendors is creating an untenable future for the industry. S. Sadagopan of Satyam calls for a restructuring of the vendor ecosystem which gives emerging software vendors a better chance to compete in this post to his Blog, The Deep End.

A Cross-Country View from
the CIO’s Seat

And it’s not a pretty picture… IT implementations continue to disappoint enterprise buyers – and much of this disappointment stems from the marketing behavior of software vendors. The Software Critic, Erik Keller, takes a look at what can be done to improve the situation in this week’s post to his Blog.


While we’re on the topic of software marketing problems, it’s time to review the sales presentation. Judith Hurwitz of Hurwitz & Associates says too many marketing pitches are so jargon-full and benefits-lite that most buyers don’t even understand what is being sold. Read tips on how to communicate better with prospects in this week’s post to the Blog on sales and marketing best practices.

Publish Your Perspective!

The Blog wants your opinions. Send your thoughts on the enterprise software industry to and we’ll publish them in our blog.

Hear C.K. Prahalad on Emerging Ecosystems

This week, the keynote address by legendary business thinker, Dr. C.K. Prahalad, joins the list of Software 2006 speaker podcasts. Visit the Software 2006 podcast page and hear from the likes of Ray Lane, David DeWalt of EMC and Thomas Kurian of Oracle.

Don’t Miss: McKinsey on Best Practices in China

Multinational companies are shifting gears in China, turning away from entry strategies and focusing instead on execution. A new article from The McKinsey Quarterly interviews the head of McKinsey's offices in China answers the questions that senior managers of multinational companies are asking.

Poll: Microsoft as On-Demand Vendor?

How will Microsoft’s entry into the on-demand CRM market impact the success of
Take our Pulse Poll >>

Last week, readers gave their opinions on whether SAP will be able to make their numbers for the full year.
Share your opinion and see the results >>

More at

SAP ramps up attack on Oracle, three areas where SaaS offerings fall short, who pays for SOA adoption and more...
Read the most important enterprise software industry news of the week >>

Reflexis Systems gets $10M, Availigent receives $12.2M, Peakstream gets $5 million and more...
Monitor the latest software venture capital deals >>

Acquisitions of the week include Mindflow Technologies, Business Signatures, SmartTime Software and more...
Size up last week's software M&A deals >>

Jim Sullivan named CFO and VP of finance of Apptera, Todd Rulon-Miller named CEO of KnowNow, Drake Pruitt named president and CEO of Bocada, and more software executive moves...
See who's made it to the top in our list of recent software executive appointments >>

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Parting Thought

“The person who knows how will always have a job, but the person who knows why will be the boss.”
— Carl Wood

Courtesy of Malcolm Kusher, The Kushner Group