Digital Transformation – Getting Past the Buzz

My vote for the most over-used technology buzz word of 2018 is “Digital Transformation”.  That being said, there are some very important, even existential, concepts behind the buzz word that all executives and business owner must understand.

The fundamental concept is that technology is changing markets and society at an ever increasing rate.  And that if business don’t learn to adapt, they will quickly become obsolete and eventually extinct.

While technology is driving this change, it by itself, is not the solution.  Using technology new ways will  certainly be an enabler, but the real key to success for a company is to develop a culture of adaptability so that it can move quickly to deal not only with technology change, but other demographic and social shifts.

For better or worse, technology is changing your relationship with your customers.  Technology is also changing the relationship between you and your workers.  In order to remain relevant, leaders must understand this and take action to address it.

Companies that cannot effectively deal with this change will find themselves with fewer customers and they will find that their best talent is walking out the door to go work for companies that are able to offer a better work environment.

By the way, in the consulting work that I have done, these are the two most common issues that I hear… uncertainty about sales and the inability to find and retain top talent.

Digital Transformation is not really about technology.  Rather it is the ability for a company to change the way it operates by building a culture of adaptability so that it can respond to the changes caused by technological advancement.

However, because culture change is the number one success factor, proactivity is essential.  Even when done well, culture change is a slow process.  Waiting until your competition forces you to change could be a death sentence.

I strongly encourage all business leaders to go beyond the buzz with a sense of urgency.  Start now and learn how to create a technology forward culture of adaptability that will allow your business to thrive.

In the coming weeks, I will cover a wide range of “digital transformation” topics that will provide new perspectives and challenge you to become more aware not just of the changes that are happening now, but also to start to see solutions.

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