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Gradually, then suddenly, the business environment has changed

In a famous line from Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises, a character in the story is asked how he went bankrupt. His reply: “Two ways… gradually, then suddenly.”

This line always resonated with me as an example of the way compounding interest works in finance. It is also a good description for the S-Curve that is so frequently seen in adoption of technological innovations, where growth of a technology is usually slow and boring at first, then suddenly shoots up in exponential growth. Gradually then suddenly is also an apt description of many geopolitical trends. We have all been tracking a weakening economy of China, then suddenly their GDP is in decline. We gradually saw Russia posturing for invasion of Ukraine, then suddenly the invasion few anticipated occurs.

The result of all of this is a very turbulent business environment and a need for executives to seek out situational awareness to inform operational decisions.

OODA’s leadership maintains an up to date C-Suite Report which tracks the big issues and provides recommendations for strategic action to mitigate risk and seize opportunities.  The most recent edition of this report provides an overall assessment of the global environment then dives into:

  • What great power competition means for your business
  • The Russian invasion of Ukraine and impact in Europe and Globally
  • Bleak economic prospects for China and impact on business environment
  • Networked Extremism and the Convergence of Crime, Insurgency, Corruption
  • Food Security as an increasing driver of geopolitics
  • The Demographic Time Bomb
  • New risks and opportunities in the age of converged technologies
  • Automation, new sensors and new communications
  • Uncertainties in computer chip supply chains
  • The need to optimize small data, reduce cost of training ML, and improve NLP
  • The coming metaverse and its potential to disrupt the Internet
  • Unstoppable Bitcoin: Opportunity and risk of the cryptocurrency revolution
  • Cyber and Geopolitical Risks
  • The Rise of Ransomware
  • What businesses should do about continuous cyber risks
  • Using scenario planning to reduce risk, seek opportunities and inform business strategies
  • Updating your strategy for the US drought and food security
  • Reshoring Accelerating

We categorize and summarize these big trends into Geopolitical Issues, Technology Trends, Cyber Risk Issues, and Recommendations for Action.

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Bob Gourley

Bob Gourley

Bob Gourley is the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of OODA LLC, the technology research and advisory firm with a focus on artificial intelligence and cybersecurity which publishes Bob is the co-host of the popular podcast The OODAcast. Bob has been an advisor to dozens of successful high tech startups and has conducted enterprise cybersecurity assessments for businesses in multiple sectors of the economy. He was a career Naval Intelligence Officer and is the former CTO of the Defense Intelligence Agency.