Can We Stay Ahead of the Obsolescence Curve? On Inflection Points, Proactive Preemption, and the Future of Supply Chain Management

Journal of Business Logistics Vol. 35 No. 1, 2014

6 Pages Posted: 26 Apr 2014

See all articles by Stanley E. Fawcett

Stanley E. Fawcett

Weber State University

Matthew A Waller

Sam M. Walton College of Business

Date Written: April 23, 2014

Abstract

Great companies — like great products and great nations — have always endured a four-stage life cycle: emergence, growth, maturity, and decline. Faster clockspeeds — enabled by compressed technology cycles and accelerated by new knowledge-sharing routines such as crowdsourcing — are shrinking life cycles. What does this mean? Entities of all kinds now find themselves in a constant race against obsolescence. We thus ask a vital question,”Can we (as a discipline) stay ahead of the obsolescence curve?” Technological and sociological inflection points promise to change the rules of engagement. For instance, 3D printing, Big Data, and drones promise to change management practice. Budget deficits, poor skill improvement, and MOOCs promise to change academe. We discuss adaptation challenges and proactive preemption as preludes to presenting various visions of the future of supply chain management.

Keywords: Change management, Proactive preemption, Big data

Suggested Citation

Fawcett, Stanley E. and Waller, Matthew Alan, Can We Stay Ahead of the Obsolescence Curve? On Inflection Points, Proactive Preemption, and the Future of Supply Chain Management (April 23, 2014). Journal of Business Logistics Vol. 35 No. 1, 2014, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2427996

Stanley E. Fawcett (Contact Author)

Weber State University ( email )

3801 University Circle
Ogden, UT 84408
United States

Matthew Alan Waller

Sam M. Walton College of Business ( email )

University of Arkansas
Fayetteville, AR 72701
United States
479-5758741 (Phone)

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