10 Jan Truth to Transformation
“As businesses transform by trying to understand how to deliver better products and services, digital steps in with the set of tools and techniques to get it done,” says Mike Sutcliff, one of the top digital business thought leaders and group chief executive of Accenture Digital. Sutcliff says that digital transformation, defined by Altimeter Group as a “formal effort to renovate business vision, models and investments for a new digital economy”,
Yet, all the models, guidance and initiatives from the “thought leaders” push companies to buy and implement more technology. One step out of an 18 element grid speaks to transformation, and it is rudimentarily focused on change management – the aged, cumbersome process of the past. Technology enables improvement programs. Programs that affect business performance and enable growth, which are certainly critical, important and worthy of pursuit. The spend in these areas will usually lead to a respectable ROI and set the business up for future gains. Adjusting to new platforms, cloud services and customer experience models is simply a requirement today. Move or become irrelevant. But this is not transformation.
Improvement is taking something that exists and making it better. Transformation is taking something that exists and making it something else.
C-level leaders will be led by the old process of turning to the “mission-vision” planning model – no one cares anymore. No longer are we constrained by limited channels to force a generically created, over reaching positioning statement, like traditional advertising and marketing, where the company is in control of all messaging and dialog. Information share, conversation, social, and all access to/from everyone have completely changed the game. Yes, branding has been transformed, the illusion of control changed, by the digital realities making “it” something different.
What is required to transform is INNOVATION. Innovation is much closer to inventionthan improvement. Innovation is its own discipline. A business cannot be transformed through improvement programs, transformation is the result of innovation. Improvement and change are subsets.
Everyone is not the same.
We operate in dynamic, sometimes complex business structures. We have objectives, pressures, influences and barriers both internal and external. In a rapidly changing landscape , the balance between proven operational excellence and intentional disruption is a formidable challenge.
Internal factors = productivity
External factors = responsiveness
Denial sets in when concepts become broad and overwhelming. Because of nebulous characteristics, we are forced to embrace ambiguity. Dealing with ambiguity is a strength of a few but paralyzing to many. The key is, in what role is the person with strength sitting inside your organization? Leader? Sales? Tech? Financial? Are voices from downstream being heard in the C-suite to influence responsiveness and strategy to evolve the brand – its offerings and market position relative to buyer behavior and competitive forces?
To INNOVATE, these become key determinations. The process of innovation encompasses all voices, all levels and must be championed by the person or leader with organizational influence and strength. Innovation is a science masquerading as an art. It is a process that takes into consideration the improvement and change initiatives, the outside market and client pressures as well as the brilliance and ambitions of the executive board, leadership and very importantly – THE BRAND.
Be Bold. Disrupt. Innovate. Grow.