This Is Not Your Grandfather's Company

By Scott Kriner, Green Metal Consulting

Our nation has gone through many phases over its proud history. We had the industrial revolution when construction was booming. We’ve gone through the dawning of the Age of Aquarius.  We’ve seen the space age reaching to the stars and we have enjoyed the age of digital communication. Today we are in a phase that puzzles economists with the explosion of what some refer to as the “superstar companies”. Today we see companies that fill gaps by making the best use of the internet, software and other technologies.  It is a digital economy dominated by a few large, top-tier players. Those companies are not necessarily the most profitable, but they are the technologically innovative companies.

These companies are transforming the way we communicate with each other, find consumer information, purchase products and services, and entertain ourselves. They normally require fewer workers than traditional companies and they tend to pay better than most companies.  They are providing opportunities to create markets that don’t even exist yet!

The July/August issue of MIT Technology Review magazine showcased the top 50 smartest companies. This list turned heads when it was stated that Tesla is worth more than General Motors. Looking at the list reveals many of these types of companies are relying on or featuring artificial intelligence (AI).  Some examples from the top 50 are listed here. See for yourself why MIT thinks these smart companies will be the dominant companies of the future.

  • Space X – Space travel with recycled rockets
  • Amazon – AI-powered stores of the future
  • Kite Pharma – Immunotherapy to fight with own blood
  • First Solar – CD Telluride solar
  • Quanergy – Sensors for autonomous cars
  • Carbon – 3D printing of shoes
  • Vestas Wind Systems – Largest U.S. wind power installer
  • DeskTop Metal -3D printing of metal parts
  • Gamalon -Accelerating machine-to-machine learning
  • DJI – Consumer drones
  • Microsoft – Commercial cloud business
  • Tesla – Battery cell production
  • M-Kopa- Pay-as-you-go solar model for third world
  • IBM – Quantum computing
  • General Electric – Incorporating AI in all businesses
  • SNAP – Entertainment through filters in machine vision
  • Kindred AI – Exoskeleton suits combining robots and humans

It looks like the days of brick and mortar companies may soon be behind us. As the construction industry struggles with shortages of skilled trade workers and truck drivers, the millennial generation is finding themselves in this strange economy with businesses that don’t function like the traditional companies whose stock is being traded on Wall Street. 

These are definitely not your grandfather’s companies anymore.

Scott Kriner is the president and founder of Green Metal Consulting Inc. He is a LEED Accredited Professional who began his career in the metal construction industry in 1981. His company is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council, the California Association of Building Energy Consultants and the Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET).

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