How to Lead a Successful Digital Transformation
Digital transformation refers to the changes associated with the application of digital technology in all aspects of human society. Digital transformation may be thought as the third stage of embracing digital technologies: digital competence → digital literacy → digital transformation. Leading a business through transformations can be hard, however, Parashift are here to help. We have summarised some key recommendations to successfully lead a digital transformation:
- Define: Defining what digital transformation means to your business is a key dimension to leading a successful transformation. It’s all about looking at the organisational strategy with the lens of technical capabilities on. This needs to be done in order to see the changes that will occur in operating and generating expenses once the transformation is carried out. It encompasses the notion that you need to start at the top, and, rather than focusing on the technology or how it operates, you look at what the business is trying to accomplish.
- Establish a process: If there is no process, then any talk about conducting a digital transformation is just that – talk. We recommend Agile. Agile is a set of software development methods in which requirements and code evolve through disciplined and structured collaboration between self-organising, cross-functional teams. Agile has become an increasingly popular process for efficiently developing high-quality software applications. Going Agile allows everybody to see the dolphins in the sea but focus on the dolphins.
- Experiment: Innovation is created through experimentation, and without innovation we don’t create change. For a digital transformation to work there has to be new practices to drive technology. An Agile process allows exactly this, exploration and experimentation, rather than following what the business thinks the solution ought to look like.
- Source our leaders: An organisation needs to source out the leaders of the pack to identify the members that will make the time to run the digital transformation initiatives. Give the leaders the right tools to start, allow them to fail a little and give them time to work out the new technologies and challenges they are attempting to master.
- Encourage a data driven culture: Encouraging a data driven culture is a key dimension to leading a successful transformation. An organisation that understands what data can do to its own successful performance will ultimately come out on top. It is important to collect meaningful data, convert it to metrics, look for tends and prioritise improvements. With this comes practice, and organisations can eventually become better at looking at data and deriving insights from it.
Will you lead, be led, or be passed by?