Business Model Canvas outdated?

Doelbewust Digitaal, Duurzaam en Divers

Business Model Canvas outdated?

Business Model Canvas outdated?

I have been, and still am, a great fan of the Business Model Canvas by Osterwalder e.a. It can really help on all aspects of business model redesign. Which aspects are important, and which need special attention. Over the years, it has really helped me in creating new product introductions and guiding my customers reimagining and optimising their business processes. It’s strength! It makes all aspects involved equally important as you cannot leave anything out.

For those who have never worked with it, the Business Model Canvas is about how a value proposition fits to customers needs (gains and pains) and how to design a business model to realise this value proposition and sell it to our customers. And that works really well. But recently, I came across several scenario’s where the canvas is no longer reflecting on all aspects of a future business model or strategy equally important.

The right focus on business

While the canvas has a central focus on making money and profit, it lacks the right emphasis for topics employee satisfaction, sustainability, resilience and customer experience. Topics that have changed our way of looking at business from low-cost, high revenue short-term growth perspective to a more sustainable business model for the longer term.

War on Talent? How to acquire and retain staff

And what about the employees? War on talent is even more intensified and any good business model will need to reflect how to acquire and retain talent with attention to benefits, life long learning and on aspects as inclusiveness, gender equality, climate and other sustainable development goals.

Resilient Value Chain

If the pandemic has shown one thing it is that we all highly rely on our partners in the value chain. What it showed was that at scarcity you might or might not get your parts or base materials. And it was not only money but also the easy with which the documents could be processed the good relationship with the vendor and the visibility of real time stock levels and production capacities, etc.

Risk and Benefits vs Cost and Revenue

Finally, I would challenge the Cost / Revenue base of the Business Model Canvas as this only reflects the economics of the model. I would rather suggest to call it Risks and Benefits. Which would include, but not be limited to, the monetary aspects.

Connect purpose, technology and experience for high performing strategies

During these sessions, I came to realize that businesses require (new) strategies that have (i) the purpose of the company at heart, are (ii) driven by digital technologies, and are (iii) measured by the experience of customers, employees and partners alike. And this purpose should not only be about making money but include goals for contribution to both society and environment. As we are an inclusive part of this world and there is no planet B.

Purpose driven strategy canvas

Sorry mister Osterwalder, for I stole your model and refitted it into a purpose driven strategy canvas. The intention is to emphasize the importance I see of the business model canvas for reimagining value propositions and business models attached. The strategy canvas is mearly a tool to make sure that when reimaging a business model and recreate a strategy, the right attention is given to all aspects that are important in today’s business.

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