As technology evolves at an exponential level, the effect can be staggering for businesses. To find their footing, amidst change, leaders will have to look at digital transformation as a positive opportunity to learn and grow as an individual and as an organization.
To effectively navigate a digital transformation, creating sustainable habits is essential. After all, digital transformation isn’t just about technology: it’s about people, problem-solving, and practices.
Here are the biggest digital transformation must-haves for 2020 and beyond.
Audit and Streamline Processes
During a digital transformation, it’s important to leave the theory of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” behind. Taking time to audit current processes and determine how technology will change those processes for the better is essential for success.
Consider digital marketing, for example. AI integrations are giving businesses new opportunities to practice lifecycle email marketing, honing in on customers, and targeting them based on their location within a sales funnel stage.
How do these disruptions impact the current standard operating procedures? More importantly, how can you use this disruption to streamlining your current practices to become bigger, better, faster, and stronger?
Prioritize Change Management
Research by McKinsey and Company revealed that a shocking 70% of all transformations fail. Why? Poor change management practices.
When a change is being put in place, it’s not enough to outline the what and when of the transformation. Success metrics and objectives go well beyond the boundaries of tasks to be completed. Businesses need to focus on change management. Who are the key stakeholders in the change, and how can the business support them? Are the employees engaged and onboard, or do they need barriers removed? Where does accountability lie? Who goes over the big data accumulated for analysis such as the data from Loggly?
All of these considerations play a role in change management. The importance of this focal point becomes even more exaggerated during digital transformations when employees have a real concern that their job will be replaced by a computer.
Begin with the End in Mind
When planning for the future, it’s easy to get caught in the now. One of the most effective business habits you can adapt for digital transformation stems from Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
When you begin with the end in mind, you being each task or project knowing where you’ll end. Thus, you start with point A (where you are now) and Point Z (where you’ll end up). Only once that framework is established can you fill in the steps between.
Starbucks succeeded in their digital transformation using this habit. “Where others are attempting to build a mobile app, Starbucks has built an end-to-end consumer platform anchored around loyalty,” quoted COO Kevin Johnson.
For Starbucks, unlike other companies, their goal was Point Z; the app was just how they’d get there. Since 2008, the business has been focused on a digital transformation for a purpose, rather than for the sake of change. The result? 22 Billion dollars in revenue in 2017.
Challenge the Status Quo
Digital transformation is all about outside-the-box thinking and disruption. It’s time to challenge the status quo and come up with something new. During a period of digital transformation, get your people in the habit of speaking their ideas freely, and challenging your preconceived notions.
When you fail to veer to the path less traveled, you risk missing incredible opportunities. If you have doubts, remember that Blockbuster was presented with the opportunity to purchase Netflix in the fall of 2000. This idea of internet movies on demand was so innovative and abstract that Blockbuster passed, saying that their current success was indicative of future success. The rest, as they say, is history.
Cultivate Your Company Culture
When you get down to brass tacks, digital transformation hinges on your people. They are the ones who accept it, implement it, and carry it across the finish line.
Focus on cultivating your company culture and creating an environment of collaboration and mentorship. Get your departments out of their silos and come together for a common purpose.
The key to digital transformation has little to do with the technology, and much to do with how you manage your people and processes. By implementing habits with measurable outcomes, you create an environment that breeds success.