A Digital Transformation has often a very different strategic context. One challenge could be that distribution channels need to be adapted fast, another one that the business model of an organization becomes disruptive in a way that competition has changed completely. In the watch industry, the Apple watch is an example how the status of a person demonstrated through an ultra-expensive watch has been replaced by wearing the Apple watch as a symbol for being always digitally connected and modern. Manufacturers, e.g. Tag Heuer, have reacted with the offering of a new range of digital Luxury watches but Apple has reinvented the industry somehow. There are 4 core areas how to define a successful Digital Transformation: Mindset, People, Processes and Tools.
Related to Digital, the definition of the social value and « the why » you want to deliver is key, don’t start with the technology. This will drive the whole transformation to a point where everybody is highly engaged. Think broader than web & social. Think how you could use technology as a stimulus for new product offerings and accept the painful reality that your organization may need a complete reset. Avoiding the Reactiveness and focus strongly on a Creative Mindset so that the digital influencers are empowered to create learning spaces define the pathway & speed as part of a leadership development process.
It is crucial to recruit a Chief Digital Transformation or Innovation Officer with a strong commitment and a broad range of technological Know How to achieve the Digital Transformation quickly. This person guides the whole process and holds the responsibility to deal with and remove the naysayers if necessary. The team should be completed with people who have good data knowledge. The usage of data is essential in terms of understanding how to leverage data analytics for your business model. Finally the way of collaboration will be totally different as thinking in silos is no longer accepted.
The ways of working will change completely. Short horizons and doing sprints as a way to do iterative small steps and fixing problems fast is normal in the IT world. For many employees used to work in long-term projects this means to unlearn old ways of Project Management and to learn agile ways of working fast. This is strongly correlated with a Creative Mindset. The willingness to co-design with your audience, especially with your customers and to collaborate and partner to move faster is a pathway to success.
Also in the world of tools, Digital Transformation has brought some major changes. To improve efficiency and scalability it is crucial to go « cloud-based » and work in the smartest manner to exchange data. Virtual meetings, webinars to learn and the paperless office are other tools to increase speed and reduce travel costs. Very important is that processes are sustainable, e.g. that employees are supported with modern hard- and software.
Digital Transformation is taking place everywhere but the companies which take it serious and organize themselves in a collaborative way will win the game.