What I learned from my life in Nokia

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Mar 25, 2019 03:28
As an ex-Nokia employee who had worked there for 14 years, I was often asked about what had happened to Nokia and why it died. Honestly, Nokia is not dead. On the contrary, it is the second largest telecom equipment provider in the world, behind the Chinese giant Huawei. But to most people, Nokia is dead since the once dominating mobile phone maker cease to exist---the recent effort of re-entering Mobile phone market by Nokia is too trivial to be noticed.

Well, it takes a lot of efforts to destroy a big company like Nokia. I had experienced both the rise and the fall of Nokia. For years, I have been trying to understand and summarize my life and Nokia's life in those years. I have also read many articles, blogs, and books written by my ex-colleagues about their retrospection of Nokia. Many people blame Microsoft for the falling of Nokia. However, from my point of view, Nokia deserved everything it got and the death was inevitable. In short, the following two aspects account for the falling of Nokia.

First, the goal. For a company to be successful, it has to get everything correct, such as goal, execution, strategy, organization. However, if the goal is wrong, nothing will save the company from entering chaos. At a time, the management of Nokia predicted that mobile phones wouldn't be profitable in the future. They wanted to convert the company into an Internet company, like Google and Facebook. This has greatly distracted the focus of the company. When this attempt failed, Nokia had wasted too many years and desperately saw Apple and Google entering the market and taking all market shares.

Second, the company culture. As an old Chinese saying goes, "Born in sorrow, die in peace". Nokia had long been battling against Motorola and Ericsson. When I joined Nokia, it was only the third in the market. After years of hard-work, Nokia won the battle and dominated the market. That makes the company arrogant and reluctant to change. Even in the last days of Nokia, people were still in the sweet dreams of their old good time.

What shall I learn from the story of Nokia? Aim right and stay hunger!