The Fourth Industrial Revolution has ushered in a brave new world few of us can begin to fathom— including those who fancy themselves cutting-edge techno-geeks, super experts and digital business geniuses. Change is happening exponentially faster than any human can process and in a qualitative manner that no machine can understand.

Executive Summary

There are four actionable technology governance approaches that boards and executives—especially those who are not presently deeply engaged in new technologies and digital change—should adopt to ensure the survival of their companies, according to governance expert and executive adviser Andrea Bonime-Blanc. Here, she reviews the approaches, along the way providing a checklist of questions for boards and executives, potentially positioning their companies to thrive during a time of disruptive change.

It will take the focus and collaboration of all kinds of people—from traditional social scientists and futurists to highly specialized, bleeding-edge technologists and everyone in between—across silos, disciplines, sectors and barriers, with the assistance of every kind of new machine we create. To navigate the coming technological storm safely and successfully, the world will need deep horizontal and vertical collaboration at every level: individual, communal, local, social, corporate, national and global.

That said, in this article we only have time to focus on a narrow sliver of this daunting task—to look at what average, more traditional businesses (executives and board members) can do today to help their companies successfully navigate these churning, changing waters in a way that builds longer-term resilience and sustainability to the benefit of shareholders and other key stakeholders.

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