Convergence holds great promise for creativity and innovation. While convergence suggests the synthesis of disparate things to form totally new things, getting there means resolving differences and the chaos that often results from forming these new connections. Whether it is the acquisition and merger of two companies, the acquisition and merger of brand portfolios, or the merging of new technologies, a period of disruption precedes true synthesis, discovery and innovation. During these periods of disruption, the focus of most companies is usually on operations.
Often, the benefits of true synthesis and anticipated innovation are not realized until much later. What started out as intended collaboration ends up as unintended collision. The idea of convergence is seductive because it promises not just great new ideas but simplicity and efficiency as well. The real challenge for businesses today may be less in identifying the potential elements to converge than to remove the bumps in the process that slow down progress.
Convergence is as much about process and technology as it is about combining ideas. And while globalization itself offers new windows of opportunity, it also brings new complexities into the process. Managing dynamic workflows to bring the benefits of convergence to fruition rapidly is becoming more, not less important. Most products of convergence are evolutionary, making it critical that companies choose workflow management tools that offer the ultimate in flexibility.