Many enterprises have seen that focusing only on the core may be detrimental as there are few examples that this has created innovation based growth.
This does not mean that routine tasks, that can be outsourced, should not increasingly be. Outsourcing has been an early and is in the context of the networked economy an even more natural step. Once done it should for its part free up management to look for growth and game-changing innovations at the edges of the core. Sometimes it however seems that more and more attention is focused on less and less. This may lead to loss of very natural near-field businesses to others who later can use this as a bridgehead when attacking the core.
The challenge is that the corporation is not really organized for growth by change (innovation) - but for execution, control and problemsolving - further driven by sometimes value-destroying short-sighted quarterly capitalism. Real quotes from real companies:
" Our innovation process turns BIG ideas into small ones:"
" We are beyond risk aware."
" Of course we thought of it. We just didn't do anything with it."
" We are so smart individually, but so dumb collectively."
Will the right balance be found - between focused management and earliest possible exploration of how the radical changes in the socio-technical landscape at the edges of the core should become growth engines? The jury is still out in many corporates.