Welcome to our blog, the digital brainyard to fine tune "Digital Master," innovate leadership, and reimagine the future of IT.

The magic “I” of CIO sparks many imaginations: Chief information officer, chief infrastructure officer , Chief Integration Officer, chief International officer, Chief Inspiration Officer, Chief Innovation Officer, Chief Influence Office etc. The future of CIO is entrepreneur driven, situation oriented, value-added,she or he will take many paradoxical roles: both as business strategist and technology visionary,talent master and effective communicator,savvy business enabler and relentless cost cutter, and transform the business into "Digital Master"!

The future of CIO is digital strategist, global thought leader, and talent master: leading IT to enlighten the customers; enable business success via influence.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

The Monthly “100 IT Charm” Book Tuning: From Monolithic IT to Mosaic IT Oct. 2019

 The role of IT in the current business environment should become strategic, enable business outcomes, build organizational competency, and catalyze business growth.

The purpose of the The purpose of the book “100 IT Charms: Running Versatile IT to get Digital Ready“ is to articulate different flavors of digital IT organizations and brainstorm the best and next practices for running highly innovative and high-performance IT. Digital charm is not based on the style presented on the surface but on a set of unique competencies to make IT shine through as a business differentiator.
      

  From Monolithic IT to Mosaic IT



Transforming IT from Monolithic Hardware Oriented to Mosaic Software Driven With overwhelming growth of information and rapid changes, the role of IT in the current business environment should become strategic, enable business outcomes, build organizational competency, and catalyze business growth. IT leaders need to make an objective assessment: What’s the focal point of IT- monolithic hardware oriented, or bits & bytes information driven? Inside-out operation-driven or outside-in customer-centric? Transaction or transformation focus?

Why is INFORMATION -Driven IT a Strategic ShiftThe tension between 'business' and IT has been around forever, but instead of getting better, it has gotten worse in the last couple of years. The reason is that digital has become ’normality,’ and almost everyone now feels at ease with digital technology. In other words, the natural knowledge advantage of the IT department has eroded. So what’s the digital advantage? Why is information driven IT a strategic shift? How to shift IT focus from "T" - technology-driven to "I" focus, and how to run a high-effective and high performance digital IT?

Running an “I” driven Digital IT Organization Digital means the rapid change, with an unprecedented level of unrepeatability and unpredictability. The ability of companies to consume and make sense of the information that is available to make good decisions or capture business insight for enforcing innovation within today’s digital dynamic is becoming a nearly insurmountable challenge. IT as the information steward, how to manage information well and unleash the full digital potential of the business?

The New Book “100 IT Charm” Introduction: Chapter II IT as an Information Broker Nowadays information is the lifeblood of the organization, all forward-looking organizations declare they are in the information management business. IT needs to shift from “T” driven operation focus to “I” information, insight and innovation centered management. Slideshare Presentation

CIOs as “Chief Information Officer”: How to Unleash the Full Potential of Information Forward-thinking IT organizations are shifting from “T"-Technology-driven to “I” information oriented. The most powerful and differentiating tool in all of today's businesses is INFORMATION and that is provided by IT systems. The aim of modern Information Management has often been described as getting the right information to the right person, in the right format and medium, at the right time, in order to make the right decisions. The value of information is qualitative, measurable, and defined uniquely by an organization. If done well, information can unleash the business’s full potential and maximize its multi-dimensional values. On the flip side, information is also something that can hinder the achievement of strategic objectives, having it unavailable or compromised. Therefore, Information Management is one of the most important management disciples and best practices in the digital organization. So going back to fundamental, CIOs as “Chief Information Officer”: How to unleash information potential, and the full potential of the business?

The blog is a dynamic book flowing with your thought; growing through your dedication; sharing your knowledge; conveying your wisdom, and making influence through touching the hearts and connecting minds across the globe. The “Future of CIO” Blog has reached 3 million page views with about #6100 blog posting. Among 59+ different categories of leadership, management, strategy, digitalization, change/talent, etc. Blogging is not about writing, but about thinking and innovating new ideas; it’s not just about WHAT to say, but about WHY to say, and HOW to say it. It reflects the color and shade of your thought patterns, and it indicates the peaks and curves of your thinking waves. Unlike pure entertainment, quality and professional content takes time for digesting, contemplation and engaging, and therefore, it takes time to attract the "hungry minds" and the "deep souls." It’s the journey to amplify diverse voices and deepen digital footprints, and it's the way to harness your innovative spirit.

Three “G” Practices in Corporate Boardroom

Contemporary corporate boards nowadays have many responsibilities, but also face various distractions.

With rapid change and exponential growth of information, how successfully organizations can handle continuous digital disruptions depends on how fast and capable they can adapt to the ever-changing environment. The senior leadership of the organization such as BoDs, like the steering wheel, needs to navigate companies through uncharted water, to ensure their ships are moving in the right direction.





Growth mindset shaping: The digital era upon us is multifaceted, non-linear, unrepeatable, and unpredictable, with exogenous drivers which couldn't be controlled completely. Leadership in itself is a constant learning process that requires the leader to build experience and to share insight. Thus, it’s critical for senior leaders such as board directors, to make a shift from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset, gain and share insight from the sea of information and the abundance of knowledge.

The difference between knowledge and insight is thinking, and especially lateral, nonlinear or multi-dimensional thinking, a holistic view. It's critical to examine the current board make-up, identify who (mindset, expertise, creativity) is currently sitting at the board table, how to develop the corporate board with a growth mindset and bootstrap their members to raise themselves to the level of knowledge and sophistication required to fill the board oversight and fiduciary responsibilities.

Gap-minding: The corporate board’s role is supposed to be the guiding force in the enterprise, envisioning and leading it towards its future. Compared to other junior level management position, the BoDs needs to spend significant time on making strategic decisions. Hence, sound judgment skills are important to enhance leadership effectiveness and improve decision-making maturity. Foresightful BoDs should always look for the complementary mindsets, diverse experiences, and differentiated skill sets so that collectively, they can avoid groupthink, mind leadership gap, make sound judgments, and provide invaluable advice to senior management.

Today’s digital board simply just can’t stand still. Bridging the gap of opportunity between where you are and want to become is a welcomed challenge. More specifically, bridging leadership gap is about filling innovation gaps, change gaps, and talent gaps. Gap-minding leadership practices are important in the boardroom because if you are not taking steps now to shrink that leadership gaps, you will not be prepared to lead digital transformation seamlessly. The corporate boards can make significant contributions to set the digital leadership tone for advancing and inclusiveness.


Governance enforcement: Governance is all about conforming to regulation and performing well to achieve business goals. Governance is fundamentally about having a systematic approach to making decisions within the corporate entity and taking an oversight of assessment.

The corporate boards play crucial roles in practicing governance disciplines. Good governance must create good performance, especially for the business growth in the long run.

In practice, governance is a “framework” for policies and processes and it enables the board to govern and report to shareholders and stakeholders. More specifically, the governance disciplines in the board level include, but not limited to gauging conditions and choices; taking an oversight of appropriation and accountability, matching priorities, and balancing resources -scoring activity and net results. Governance is a sophisticated process that if well executed, will lead to better decisions and performance. It will allow not only to protect the existing value but also to create new value for its shareholders.

The digital ecosystem is just like the natural ecosystem which keeps the dynamic balance of order and chaos, patterns and diversity. Contemporary corporate boards nowadays have many responsibilities, but also face various distractions. They need to shape growth mindset, have multi-intelligent wisdom, understand things and circumstance in a holistic way, bridge varying leadership gaps in order to steer the business in the right direction.

The Art and Science of Creative Disruption

 Virtually all real economic growth or societal progress is driven by some sorts of creative disruptions.


There is no doubt we are moving from a static and linear business world to a dynamic, hyper-connected, and interdependent digital era. Innovation is the result of some kind of disruption; it can be defined as the collision between different perspectives, mind-states of possibility and thought patterns that result in creative ideas and solutions. Virtually all real economic growth or societal progress is driven by some sorts of creative disruptions.


Disrupt the outdated mindsets, systems, processes, cultures, business models, or practices: Organizations today are the business system with a mixed bag of old and new. When a system produces "bad" side-effects, we may wish to intervene. Often, creative disruptions are inevitable. In fact, innovation is all about disrupting outdated thinking and old ways to do things, such as silo, status quo, dysfunction, complication, rigidity, or bureaucracy, etc. “Disruption” and “stimulation” makes sense, taking into consideration that many businesses do not seem to be satisfied with the current circumstances because there are not enough innovations happening in their businesses to disrupt outdated mindsets, systems, processes, cultures, business models, or practices. It’s critical for organizations to make creative disruption for awakening innovation, make a seamless transformation from the closed and silo system to a cognitively open, hyper-connected, and intra-active ecological systems.

Disrupt and then reconstruct: The highly innovative companies usually have a powerful innovation navigation system which involves tapping the business ecosystem for a collective perspective on where to disrupt or where to reconstruct. When systems are bad, silo thinking is propagating, functional gaps are enlarged, you know some breakdowns are needed to stimulate innovation. When people are not working via the system to solve the real problems but play the system or create frictions to changes, or when systems beat good people every time, you know the systems are “bad,” you acknowledge that the system is dysfunctional, and creative disruption is a strategic imperative. When organizations only seek examples to follow, rather than develop their own tailored solutions to emerging problems, you know some simulations are needed to first disrupt, and then reconstruct, integrate all critical business elements into unique innovation competency.

Information Technology catalyzes constructive disruption: Historically, technology indeed stimulates mankind's imagination, to make constructive disruptions and achieve the “art of the possible” continually. Organizations today can leverage lightweight, powerful and intuitive digital technologies to make constructive innovation. The exponential growth of information brings new opportunities for companies to capture business insight or forecast customers’ demands. To make creative disruptions, organizations depend more heavily on their technological knowledge and market capabilities to experiment, learn and innovate. Information Technology matters not only because it’s pervasive, but also because it continues to advance, and its nature of the "constructive disruption." At the highest level, Information Technology needs to become the game changer for the business. Make people feel more comfortable with the digital new normal - chaos, uncertainty, and ambiguity. It’s also important to build a risk-tolerance environment, allow time for playing and exploring, stimulating creative thinking, and catalyzing disruptive innovations.

Creative disruption is both art and science. It could make previously valued skills or competitive advantage less demanded, with potential of becoming obsolete. On the other side, it’s exciting because often it could bring something new to the party - something that couldn’t have been possible. Creative disruption can lead to breakthrough innovation. So you will get very great chances and opportunities to change your organization in many fields and lift up the organization to the next cycle of growth and maturity.

Monday, October 21, 2019

The Monthly Organizational Structure Tuning: Tuning the Learning Organizational Structure Oct. 2019

The digital organization keeps growing, generates patterns, tunes organizational structure, initiates business activities, and above all, creates novelty and builds knowledge over time.

Digital makes a significant impact on every aspect of the business from people, process to technology, both horizontally and vertically. Digital becomes the very fabric of high performing business, being outside-in and customer-centric is the new mantra for forward-looking and high mature digital organizations today. From an organizational structure perspective, how can you fine-tune the digital dimensions of your organizational development to harness innovation?



Tuning the Learning Organizational Structure 


Tuning a Learning Organizational Structure To survive in the “VUCA” digital era, dynamism consists in being able to break away from being static, and becoming proactive to ever-evolving changes. The more difficult challenge is not just launching successful teams, but maintaining their motivation and focus, tuning an organizational structure and creating a dynamic environment in which learning is the new norm and happens the whole time. Unlike the closed mechanical system, the digital organization keeps growing, generates patterns, tunes organizational structure, initiates business activities, and above all, creates novelty and builds knowledge over time.


How to Fine Tune a Digital Learning Organization Digital means the increasing speed of change and hyper-connected, always-on businesses. Change Management in high mature organizations are no longer just a one-time business initiative, but an ongoing business capability. Change Management and Strategy Management need to go hand-in-hand. But more specifically, how to manage change effectively to improve its success rate, and how to fine-tune a digital learning organization?

Does a Flat Organization help or hinder Talent Management Due to the hyper-connectivity and "always-on" nature of digitalization with the emerging digital technology trend, the functional borders are blurring and organizations have become flatter and dynamic, does such structure help or hinder HR? And how can a highly-effective HR catalyze business's digital transformation?

Develop a Learning Organization and Build Breakthrough Innovation Competency With the increasing pace of changes and cutting throat competitions, to effectively respond to the digital dynamics, companies must begin thinking about ways to build their innovation competency, broaden their ecosystems and revenue streams. In reality, the true innovation always spurs certain disruptions otherwise it is not innovation. Nowadays innovation can occur anywhere in the organization, and frankly, it has to occur in every aspect of the organization, information is the most time-intensive piece of digital innovation. How can companies develop a learning organization and take a structural way to manage innovation, especially breakthrough innovations which are disruptive and will change their organizations in many fields? You need new technology, new processes, new knowledge, maybe a new business model. All that makes them very risky but on the other hand, you will get very great chances and opportunities for achieving leapfrog results.

A Learning Organization A learning organization is one in which the majority of the employees at all levels are open to new ideas, experimentation with new ways of doing things, learning from instead of condemning or punishing mistakes, errors and, perhaps most importantly, where knowledge is shared instead of hoarded, thus, expanding power instead of confining it. What Systems Thinking models are called up when organizations "learn"? Can you recognize the interconnectivity between employee learning and organizational learning? What are the characteristics of a learning organization? And does "Learning" trait differentiate Digital Masters from the digital laggards?

The “Future of CIO” Blog has reached 3 million page views with about #6100+ blog posting in 59+ different categories of leadership, management, strategy, digitalization, change/talent, etc. blog posting. The content richness is not for its own sake, but to convey the vision and share the wisdom, to inspire critical thinking and spur healthy debates. Blogging is not about writing, but about thinking and innovating new ideas; it’s not just about WHAT to say, but about WHY to say, and HOW to say it. It reflects the color and shade of your thought patterns, and it indicates the peaks and curves of your thinking waves. Unlike pure entertainment, quality and professional content takes time for digesting, contemplation and engaging, and therefore, it takes time to attract the "hungry minds" and the "deep souls." It’s the journey to amplify diverse voices and deepen digital footprints, and it's the way to harness your innovative spirit.

The Best “Paranoid” Quotes of “Digital Master” Oct. 2019

Being paranoid doesn’t mean to be hysterical or overly-emotional but keep one cool-headed, and logical.

"Digital Master” is a series of guidebooks (28 + books) to perceive the multi-faceted impact digital is making to the businesses and society, help forward-thinking organizations navigate through the journey in a systematic way, and avoid “rogue digital.” It perceives the emergent trends of digital leadership, provides advice on how to run a digital organization to unleash its full potential and improve agility, maturity, and provide insight about Change Management. It also instructs the digital workforce on how to shape a game-changing digital mindset and build the right set of digital capabilities to compete for the future. Here is a set of “Paranoid” quotes in “Digital Master.

1 Leading complex digital organizations is a challenge that transcends rational management and that requires paradoxical capabilities and behavioral complexity and competencies that distinguish great leaders from others.

2 Being positive and paranoid at the same time makes interesting paradox-pair in sharpening contemporary leadership.

3 Being paranoid doesn’t mean to be hysterical or overly-emotional but keep one cool-headed, and logical.

4 To successfully manage paradoxes, organizational leaders need to be both positive and have a certain level of paranoid, also must learn to deal with contradictions and embrace incompatible forces, rather than choose between them

5 Digital leaders need to keep feeling paranoid because of rapid speed of changes and exponential growth of information.

6 The paranoid leaders keep their eyes open for both capturing the emergent digital trends and avoiding pitfalls and barriers on the way.

7 The great attitude for innovation is to experiment with new things fearlessly and take a new adventure but be “paranoid” and manage innovation systematically.

8 Organizations can reach their strategic inflection point when they can synchronize and conduct change; it is also the moment to be “paranoid” - as it is the act of inflecting or the state of being inflected.

9 The paranoid leaders are not weak, they are just mindful, inquisitive, and innovative. They are paranoid about changes, they are paranoid about fierce competitions, they are paranoid about overwhelming information, so they spend more time on thinking thoroughly and act promptly to adapt to changes and focus on the long-term winning position.

Running Logical IT by Evolving Five-Step Digital Flow

Running logical IT with all critical flows enable the business moving up to the advanced stage of digital deployment and yield strategic advantage.

IT is an engineering discipline, as always, but adding more enriched digital context for the paradigm shift. IT can be used as a tool, an enabler, a catalyst, and a digital platform to orchestrate change and facilitate idea creation and implementation, to meet the ultimate goal of an organization's short, medium, and long-term strategic goals. It’s important to take a structural approach to run logical IT by evolving five-step digital flow.




Situation - requirements, expectations, capabilities, trends: Every IT project should be business initiative for meeting customers’ expectations. IT management needs to leverage “SWOT” or other analysis tools for making an objective assessment of the IT organizational strength and weakness, opportunities and threats, as well as trend. Look at what's happening now and what's coming down the pike so they can be proactive in preparing for it. It really forces businesses to do an environmental scan, pay attention to how things are changing and then think about what they might need to change to respond to the trends.

When it comes to collect business requirements, IT has to keep track of where the requirements come from. IT requirements need to functionally structured to serve the enterprise needs, and it often requires cross-functional teams working collaboratively to produce the overall functionality and required capability. IT has to oversee the full set of requirements to ensure the cohesiveness and obtain the involvement from customers, users and stakeholders.

Strategy - value proposition, business model, implementation plan: IT strategy is an integral component of the organizational strategy. Having an information-based strategy requires people to think really ahead. IT needs to deliver value to the organization in order to help the business build differentiated competency and implement business strategy. IT value is multifaceted and it’s interesting to see how IT value is in the eye of the beholder, and provides context for varying interest and need.

 IT value-based strategy management needs to be driven by concepts such as collaborative value or collective advantage and multi-layer ROIs. IT can expect some sort of partnership with the business, where you have business folks coming up with further ideas on how they can benefit from IT. IT should play a proactive role in proposing, as opposed to responding to changes and reinvent IT for getting digital ready. With information abundance and lightweight digital technologies, IT also plays a critical role in recharging business models and lifting the organization up to the next stage of the business development cycle.

Deployment - systems, processes, tasks, knowledge, review: Information Technology system is the backbone of the digital organization. The “T” (technology or a computer system) part of IT is an enabling system for an “I” driven - Information System (IS). Real information systems are business oriented, to integrate different pieces of IT components into a holistic system for accomplishing strategic business goals and objectives.

Often, the bad systems are possibly caused by complicated processes or inflexible procedures or silo functions. It’s important to take a structural approach to improve IT processes and systems by reducing the waste and burden, to understand that a system is a necessary precondition for effective intervention. The best way IT can demonstrate value to the business is to invest in understanding the business processes it supports, streamline workloads, accomplish tasks, manage knowledge, and deliver improvements that help the business achieve its strategic goals and objectives. An effective IT system is dynamic, robust, and antifragile, to keep businesses flow and ensure the system as a whole is more than the sum of its parts.

Performance - customer experience, effectiveness, efficiency, productivity, compliance: IT performance measurement helps IT management continue to review upon ROIs of existing IT investment and improve overall IT management effectiveness and efficiency. IT performance indicators should show a clear link to C-level executives between IT performance and top-line business revenue generation. The measurable IT performance allows wider business audience knowing IT value-proposition and improves IT department visibility.

IT leaders nowadays have to be prepared to constantly realign technology against the enterprise's business needs and measure things really matter to the business's success, such as IT productivity, effectiveness, efficiency, customer experience, etc. To refine IT reputation, "measuring up" is intriguing but it is crucial for IT to be perceived as a strategic business partner and relentless “digital transformer.”

Outcomes - customer satisfaction, business partner and employee engagement, financial health, and shareholder delight: The best IT managers are focused on success at all levels, from the success of their own team to the success of their organization, and the entire company. There is ever greater abilities to create engagement for achieving desired business outcomes, such as customer satisfaction, employee engagement, business partnership, employee engagement, financial health, and shareholder delight, etc. 

In detail, for example, the customer satisfaction assessment includes such as IT resources consumption, growing tendencies, main complaints, SLAs, customer’s touch point digitalization, NPS,etc. Process, technology, culture, capability tuning. etc, are all important components and tactics to get the organization from here to there for adapting to over-complexity and fast-pace of changes.

IT organizations have come a long way from being purely technical specialists to being critical strategic partners for leading business growth and transformation. Running a logical IT with all critical flows enable the business moving up to the advanced stage of digital deployment and yield strategic advantage.

Sunday, October 20, 2019

The Monthly “Digital Fit” Book Tuning: The Digital Workforce Fit Oct. 2019

 Due to the “VUCA” characteristics of business new normal, digital workplace today needs to become dynamic and informative. 

The purpose of “Digital Fit: Manifest Future of Business with Multidimensional Fit“ is to share insight about multidimensional enterprise fit from digital characteristics, organizational structure, change, knowledge, and talent perspectives; evoke critical and paradoxical thinking about digital “fit vs. misfit,” spark healthy debates on how to define and develop true digital fit, and build a fitting working environment to inspire creativity and accelerate digital transformation.

                  

            The Digital Workforce Fit 


Three Questions to Clarify Digital Workforce Fit Digital is the age of people-centricity. Going digital is an evolutionary path of pursuing the next level of organizational maturity and collective human progress via empowerment and democratic meritocracy. In practice, how to put the right people with the right capability in the right position to solve the right problems? Here are three questions to clarify digital workforce fit.

Five Aspects of Digital Workforce Readiness Today’s digital workforces are multigenerational, multicultural, multi-geographical, multitasking, and multi-devicing. One of the key determinants of whether an organization can move up to the new digital structure for improving its business adaptability and strategic flexibility is the development level of the people. People are often the weakest link but one of the most critical success factors of the organization. Therefore, part of the digital transformation journey is to prepare people to get digital ready psychologically and professionally. Developing high mature digital workforce won’t happen overnight, it takes planning, adapting, and innovating. Here are five aspects of digital workforce readiness.

Three Aspects in Building a Digital Workplace Digitalizing the workplaces isabout building an environment with the abundance of information and the culture of innovation, to put people at the center of business, and to both engage employees and delight customers. After clarifying the Big Why, there are still many questions haunting around about the Knowing -HOW, though: Is it possible to have an effective digital workplace where the culture is more command and control, where the chosen solutions simply mirror or reinforce the way of working within that hierarchy, but do so very well? Or is it a prerequisite of an effective Digital Workforce to have that more open culture, and so "traditional" organizations are facing a culture change task alongside the development of a more effective Digital Workforce? Could you be imposing the current values of collaboration and openness on an effective Digital Workforce, and discounting organizations who aren't making progress in developing their own Digital Workforce? When setting the workplace policy to enforce digital management, are you thinking of guidelines for people? Do you have a basic business conduct policy that people sign when they join?

The Characteristics of Digital Workplace Due to the “VUCA” characteristics of business new normal, digital workplace today needs to become dynamic and informative. Traditional hierarchical lines will phase out and a collective of the business partnership will emerge. The digital transformation won’t happen overnight, organizations need to work collaboratively to set the strategy and achieve organizational goals, invest in the cultivation of capacity for change, innovation, and strategy implementation.

A Psychologist’s Mind: How to Shape Digital Workforce with Positive Psychology Some say Western Management is based on psychology, and Eastern Management stems from philosophy. The psychology is the condensed version of mindset; whereas the philosophy is the abstract fact of human society. In today’s always connected, increasingly decentralized workplace, how to shape digital workforce with positive psychology, though?

The “Future of CIO” Blog has reached 3 million page views with about #6100+ blog posting in 59+ different categories of leadership, management, strategy, digitalization, change/talent, etc. blog posting. The content richness is not for its own sake, but to convey the vision and share the wisdom, to inspire critical thinking and spur healthy debates. Blogging is not about writing, but about thinking and innovating new ideas; it’s not just about WHAT to say, but about WHY to say, and HOW to say it. It reflects the color and shade of your thought patterns, and it indicates the peaks and curves of your thinking waves. Unlike pure entertainment, quality and professional content takes time for digesting, contemplation and engaging, and therefore, it takes time to attract the "hungry minds" and the "deep souls." It’s the journey to amplify diverse voices and deepen digital footprints, and it's the way to harness your innovative spirit.

The Best “Visualization” Quotes of “Digital Master” Oct. 2019

Seeing is believing. It is the very perspective to develop visualization methods which can leverage multi-factors in discovering patterns or hidden meanings.

"Digital Master is a series of guidebooks (28 + books) to perceive the multi-faceted impact digital is making to the businesses and society, help forward-thinking organizations navigate through the journey in a systematic way, and avoid “rogue digital.” It perceives the emergent trends of digital leadership, provides advice on how to run a digital organization to unleash its full potential and improve agility, maturity, and provide insight about Change Management. It also instructs the digital workforce on how to shape a game-changing digital mindset and build the right set of digital capabilities to compete for the future. Here is a set of “Visualization” quotes in “Digital Master.


1 Visualization is the best way to really understand information contextually and present information vividly because it is in people's nature to receive visual information that helps to explain and portray one or more outcomes.

2 It is the very perspective to develop visualization methods which can leverage multi-factors in discovering patterns or hidden meanings.

3 Seeing is believing. Visualization practices help digital leaders envision a big picture with information-based insight and ecosystem viewpoints to lead a smooth digital transformation at the right pace.

4 Business leaders today need to leverage their “sense and sensitivity,” visualize the large scale of changes by looking forward, looking ahead and being proactively looking for opportunities to improve.

5 Achieving visibility of digital transformation provides a pathway into process optimization and business case justification.

6 Visualizing customer experience is the very first step for understanding what customers actually want by “living as a customer”; it’s also a critical step in developing a user experience that fits their needs.

7 Visualizing user experience helps to provide innovative solutions that meet customers’ need by designing applications, products or services which can perform and optimize every touch point of user experience.

8 Visualization is crucial yet largely overlooked in innovation strategizing, such as business model innovation.

9 Design and visualization enables people to develop new business models for bridging between the innovations of tomorrow with the business realities of today.





Three Accomplishments Imply You are Perhaps at “the End of the Beginning” for IT-Led Digital Transformation

Digital is the new paradigm shift to deeply connect the business nature to the natural ecosystem. 

Digital transformation is a long journey, and the path for digital transformation can be iterative, evolutionary, revolutionary, or disruptive. Information Technology is often the driving force behind digital transformation as IT continues to grow in importance to organizational growth and as a competitive advantage. IT-driven digital transformation inspires growth mindset, catalyzes innovation, and unleashes organizational potential. It’s a long journey, here are three accomplishment imply that you are perhaps at the “end of the beginning” for digital transformation,  and well reach the inflection point to accelerate transformative changes.






Has created a digital transformation framework for all structural components: It takes a structural approach to manage digital transformation. A well-defined digital framework provides guidelines, checklists, standards, processes, do & don't practices, to define business competencies, enforces communication, and develop cross-functional and interrelational management processes to help reduce business tensions, frictions, and conflicts that arise, and manage a holistic digital transformation.

Digital transformation cannot be just another thing that needs to be accomplished, it has to be woven into communication, process, and action of the digital organization. An effective digital transformation framework contains the "people" considerations and organizational change and information technology components, with all essential dimensions such as (a) stakeholders, people, and communication; (b) business benefits and business value; (c) program management, organizational structure, and governance.

Has built crucial IT enabled ability to apply real-time insight: Digital organization is an information abundant and highly intelligent business. IT provides businesses the ability to apply real-time insights across the organization in ways never possible before. With these business insights, organizations acquire the ability to reshape products, services, and customer engagement, with the help of digital technologies. Information Management enables the business capturing the real-time business foreight and customer insight for discovering the new areas which contribute to the business growth, or spotting the opportunities to increase revenues. IT should partner with all the different functions of the business to bring up different perspectives as any business initiatives or reinvention efforts should have clear business goals, to provide business insight, services, and solutions in new ways. The information-driven digital insight is a sort of contextual understanding. Contextual intelligence is a higher-level of digital fluency and maturity.

Has cultivated a culture of learning and change with greater transparency: Transformative change involves a complete end to end change. It often needs to fine-tune the underlying organizational structures, functions, as well as the collective mindset -culture. It needs to deprogram outdated mindset, overcome “the good enough mindset” or mediocre culture, and reprogram people’s mindset with digital thinking, norms, and attitude, and establish a new blueprint about the future of the business. 

A culture that enables constant improvement is the most valuable change engine you can build. It takes more engagement and retention initiatives, enforce training and development at every level in the organization to involve and engage, emerge and evolve. The newer thoughts, newer information, newer knowledge are all that captivates digital professionals with high curiosity to learn and quickly absorb and adapt to the needs of the changes necessitated with the evolving new thinking and trends.

Digital is the new paradigm shift to deeply connect the business nature to the natural ecosystem. When you accomplish the above, you are perhaps ready for stepping into the next phase of digital transformation and accelerating the speed of change and innovation.  IT can drive the digital transformation but it should be in conjunction with the business. In order to accomplish the impossible, organizational leaders today must be able to re-imagine the future of business and see the invisible, make a seamless digital paradigm shift to reach the next level of organizational maturity.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Digital Workforce as Learning Master

Digital organizations today need to redefine themselves where talent can develop and learn more rapidly than anywhere else.

People are often the weakest link but one of the most critical success factors of the organization. Modern digital technologies bring unprecedented convenience for people to learn and collaborate, improve their productivity, learning agility, and innovativeness. Digital workforce is a technology savvy new breed and learning master.




Digital transformation journey is to prepare people for getting digital ready:
Digital work forces are multi-generational, multicultural, and multi-devicing. Driven by change necessities, digital technologies, and cultural progress, the digital workforce today are divergent in many ways, share a natural affinity for new perspectives, fresh insight, and collective wisdom. To create a culture of learning means having the right pro-learning mindset, from top down. When people leave the inside box thoughts and standards to seek additional knowledge and experience, they are stepping outside that box into unfamiliar territory and lead change effortlessly. It’s strategic to build a learning organization in which people can learn and develop themselves and dare to be different. Because digital environment is dynamic and uncertain, business growth and innovation today are heavily dependent on having the right people with a growth mindset to catalyze change and innovation relentlessly.

Forecasting demand for specific skills and roles helps to accelerate organizational learning and performance: Forecast knowledge and skills are required to ensure you have the right people, in the right place, at the right time, and for the right cost. Talent managers start using data not just to monitor employees’ behavior, but to ask and answer some hard questions that are at the heart of how employees contribute to business performance, predict employee preferences and behaviors and tailor next practices to attract and retain talent.

Develop predictive models and identify leading indicators to forecast business requirements and staffing requirements, track skills and performance, and maximize human capital investment. With effective information and knowledge management, they can amplify their knowledge power to solve business problems collectively. It’s also important to orient people and make them appreciate the diversity of thought and help them build their professional skills progressively. The digital ready workforce is composed of people who can work independently, well disciplined, have both learning agility and excellent problem-solving skills, bring positivity and creativity to the workplace.

Enforce interdisciplinarity: Knowledge hybridity or interdisciplinarity can be applied to digital management by integrating multidisciplinary methodology which involves applied science (engineering), art (design), principle (Philosophy), Cognition (Psychology), Social norms (Culture) and group behavior (sociology) for reaching the next level of digital management maturity. 

Communication, integration, planning, and training are indispensable when you are on the ride of digital trajectory. To improve the change success rate, understanding the learning curve needs to be the prerequisite to ensure change success. The learning curve is applicable to everyone even those who planned and conceived the vision for change. Thus, change requires tools, training, and practices in order for the participants to feel comfortable that the service level they provide will continue to improve with the same or reduced effort.

A digital workplace encompasses so much that it's hard to isolate it from other dimensions of the enterprise. Digital organizations today need to redefine themselves where talent can develop and learn more rapidly than anywhere else. They are like the melting pot to inspire creativity, motivate learning, encourage free thinking, as well as experimenting with better ways to do things continuously. Keep learning, so you can keep improving.



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The Best “Differentiation” Quotes of “Digital Master” Oct. 2019

The real strategic differentiation is to create true value, look forward, not backward, and present the advanced uniqueness to shine through.

"Digital Master” is a series of guidebooks (28 + books) to perceive the multi-faceted impact digital is making to the businesses and society, help forward-thinking organizations navigate through the journey in a systematic way, and avoid “rogue digital.” It perceives the emergent trends of digital leadership, provides advice on how to run a digital organization to unleash its full potential and improve agility, maturity, and provide insight about Change Management. It also instructs the digital workforce on how to shape a game-changing digital mindset and build the right set of digital capabilities to compete for the future. Here is a set of “Differentiation” quotes in “Digital Master.


1 The real strategic differentiation is to create true value, look forward, not backward, and present the advanced uniqueness to shine through.

2 There are many sources of differentiation. Differentiation just for the sake of being different isn't a strategy, it's a tactic.

3 The differentiation provided by innovative technology usually is more long-lived than differentiation provided by marketing actions that can be copied easily.

4 Differentiation is an effect accomplished by having a sustainable decisive competitive advantage to the market, rooted in operational excellence which makes it difficult or even impossible for competitors to imitate.

5 Sometimes people tend to confuse the differences between a strategy, its direction and the appropriate strategic moves the organization makes in the midst of available alternatives.

6 One size cannot fit all. If you have a commoditized product in a highly competitive marketplace, then differentiation strategies may be more important to you, rather than if you have a niche service with few or no competitors.

7 It is increasingly difficult to differentiate from competitors, at least partly due to various factors caused by globalization, and there is an increasing reliance on technology to provide differentiation and to speed up innovation.

8 There are always players starting with different resources and competitive position. And there are always different complexities at a different time.

9 Organizations are different, they have different cultures, different structures, they compete in different markets, they have a different scale.




Systems Thinking and Problem-Solving

Leveraging Systems thinking to understand a problem is about reaching a shared understanding through studying, reasoning, and experimenting; solving it in a structural way, 

Systems Thinking is about understanding interconnected relationship between parts and the whole. The business problems today usually have many causes and can be very complex. Leveraging Systems Thinking to problem-solving includes framing the right problems, understanding the interconnected relationship between different problems, as well as figuring out potential solutions.




The purpose of Systems Thinking is to solve problems and creating desirable future: When things are not independent of one another they may act as a complex system, where simple logic can hardly help. Systems Thinking progression is to be sensitive to emergent trends and reach the state of the flow with the harmony of interconnectivity and interdependence.

You can drive mechanically thinking about a problem in normal traffic and linear logic. However, if the situation is very natural and fluid, with a lot of inter-dependencies and uncertainty, it calls for holistic or systems thinking. Systems Thinking helps to understand interrelationships rather than isolating things, seeing patterns of change rather than static snapshots. It helps to investigate continually via any means possible to deepen understanding of the problem and solve it holistically for creating a desirable future.

A systems thinker knows correlation doesn't necessarily mean causation in problem-defining and solving: Causation, generally speaking, is the reason behind every cause. Correlation is simply a relationship. The problems usually have many causes and can be very complex. It doesn't mean that there has to be an exact correlation. Causation is always within a context. Context aids us in understanding what’s relevant and what’s not. Correlations must be confirmed as real, and then, every possible causative relationship must be systematically explored.

Context can be altered with urgency or the perception of urgency. For complex problem solving, understanding context is often the first and the most important step in truly understanding of problems - without it, you are working without any boundaries, or basis for understanding what you are doing. “Seeing' the context you are 'part” of, allows you to identify the leverage points of the system and then, choose the decisive factors, in an attempt to solve problems. From problem-solving perspective, doing cause-effect analysis entails effect on context; intended vs. actual; and source of effect.

Leverage Systems Thinking to look for something “hidden,” which is not always obvious: Often times, people have a tendency to try to fix a symptom which results from the actual cause of the problem. With the rapid growth of information and fast-paced changes, it’s important to challenge conventional wisdom and eliminate pre-conceptual assumptions for decision-making and problem-solving. 

To 'just go ahead and fix it" carries assumptions, particularly, assumptions about something wrong, limiting, or not working in some way that requires 'fixing,” Act by gathering data and testing assumptions to validate their understanding before tinkering. There needs to be a better appreciation to leverage Systems Thinking to make more logical “assumptions” or better “forecast,” understand problems from different angles and zoom out to see the larger system and their part in the mess, in order to come up with optimal solutions without too many side effects.

The problem-solving thought process and practices will not be simple for many of today’s complex issues or vexing problems. Leveraging Systems thinking to understand a problem is about reaching a shared understanding through studying, reasoning, and experimenting; solving it in a structural way, as well as taking some existing core approaches and applying those in new areas or to new problems.

Friday, October 18, 2019

The Monthly Foresight: Trending the Future to Get Digital Ready Oct. 2019

Going digital is about discovering the unique path to take the adventure for reaching a well-defined vision by exploring new possibilities and experimenting with better ways to do things. 

The effects of an increasingly digitized world are now reaching into every corner of businesses and every aspect of organizations. Digital is the age of creativity and innovation, creativity is the most desired trait for digital leaders and professionals today, and innovation is the light every organization is pursuing. Which themes shall you set to advocate digital transformation? How to lead to the digital future effortlessly?



      Trending the Future to Get Digital Ready  



Trending the Digital Path via Bold Experimentation: The emergence of potential opportunities for exploring digital is likely to follow a nonlinear pattern with the faster speed and pervasiveness of information technology. Going digital is about discovering the unique path to take the adventure for reaching a well-defined vision by exploring new possibilities, experimenting with better ways to do things, refining information into business insight, and developing the unique business competency.

Develop Breakthrough Business Models by Trending Emerging Technology When we jump into the digital future of “VUCA” new normal –volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity, organizational leaders should be able to envision and determine what the future needs to look like, what the transformation must look like? Can information technology help to design new business models? Is the business model scaling the right way to achieve the strategic objectives? And how to take the wise steps for evolving the emerging digital information technology to develop breakthrough business model and innovation?

Navigate through the Future of Workplace and Workforce Management Organizations of the future are increasingly exhibiting digital characteristics such as hyperconnectivity, interdependence, velocity, and complexity in various shades and intensity. Digital organizations need to be organized in such a way that it is a part of the hyper-connected modern world, solid enough to manage orders from chaos and fluid enough for adapting to changes and keeping the business highly responsive to the dynamic business environment. Digital leaders today should be able to navigate through the future of the workplace and workforce management by sharing a clear vision, providing directions and advancing leadership influence.

Running a Future-Driven IT Organization to Catalyze Growth Organizations large or small are on the digital journey, corporate IT needs to shift from a back office support center to a future-driven growth engine. Because more often information is the lifeblood and technology is the disruptive force of digital transformation.

Digital Journey: From Vision to Orientation The roadmap is a commonly used tool to communicate long-term thinking effectively. Strategists, planners, and architects use road-maps to communicate their vision of strategic capabilities and competencies. From vision to orientation, it is a logical step for organizations to prepare for their digital journey.

The “Future of CIO” Blog has reached 3 million page views with about #6100th blog posting in 59+ different categories of leadership, management, strategy, digitalization, change/talent, etc. The “Digital Master” book series includes 28 books to share insight from the multidimensional digital lens and perceive the multi-faceted impact the digital era upon us is making to the businesses and society. The content richness is not for its own sake, but to convey the vision and share the wisdom. Blogging is not about writing, but about thinking and innovating the new ideas; it’s not just about WHAT to say, but about WHY to say, and HOW to say it. It reflects the color and shade of your thought patterns, and it indicates the peaks and curves of your thinking waves. Unlike pure entertainment, quality and professional content takes time for digesting, contemplation and engaging, and therefore, it takes time to attract the "hungry minds" and the "deep souls." It’s the journey to amplify diverse voices and deepen digital footprints, and it's the way to harness your innovative spirit.

The Best “Resourcefulness” Quotes of “Digital Master” Oct. 2019

 The resourceful people are not those that remember every detail but those that know where to look for knowledge.

"Digital Master” is a series of guidebooks (28 + books) to perceive the multi-faceted impact digital is making to the businesses and society, help forward-thinking organizations navigate through the journey in a systematic way, and avoid “rogue digital.” It perceives the emergent trends of digital leadership, provides advice on how to run a digital organization to unleash its full potential and improve agility, maturity, and provide insight about Change Management. It also instructs the digital workforce on how to shape a game-changing digital mindset and build the right set of digital capabilities to compete for the future. Here is a set of “Resourcefulness” quotes in “Digital Master.


1 Being resourceful provides one angle to show that you have the ability to learn, know how to learn, and become learning agile.

2 The resourceful people are not those that remember every detail but those that know where to look for knowledge.

3 To be resourceful and objective, you need to always listen to the “two sides of the story” or search for contrary viewpoints to gaining in-depth understanding of the certain topic.

4 The organizational resource is aggregate attributes of those who comprise the company, and it refers to “firm-specific assets that are difficult if not impossible to imitate."

5 Organizations have limited resources, resource management becomes an important management discipline to improve organizational effectiveness, efficiency, performance and competency.

6 Resource and capability delineation helps to clarify strategy. Dynamic capabilities are: "an organization's ability to achieve new and innovative forms of competitive advantage."

7 Successful capacity planning and resource management are critical to ensure that resource is available before they are needed.

8 It is essential for the entire company to be pulling in the right direction by allocating resources, time, and assets scientifically. Re-balancing resource helps the organization take advantage of resources effectively, optimize cost, manage a well-managed application portfolio, keep the business run, grow, and transform steadily,

9 With the overwhelming amount of information in the business and our society, it is more crucial to be resourceful, because the static knowledge can be outdated shortly, and often you need to continue to hunt for the latest information for learning & relearning, decision-making, and problem-solving.

Three Subsystems of Digital Organization

To understand the digital business as a complex and adaptive system requires systems understanding and searching for meaningful relationships both within the subsystems and between them.

Every system is a subsystem of a larger system and simultaneously it is always built up by subsystems. To understand the digital business as a complex and adaptive system requires systems understanding and searching for meaningful relationships both within the subsystems and between them; monitoring and observing links to ensure that the company as a whole is superior to the sum of pieces. Here are three subsystems of digital organization.




Information/knowledge management system: Information system is a business-centric system that deals with information management by processing, refining and delivering information and knowledge to ensure that information can flow frictionlessly to the right people for allowing them to make the right decisions in a timely manner. Information system is a system with interdependent processes, technologies, and a set of interdisciplinary practices, incorporate both ends and means, continuously open to new information from dynamic business environment and are able to circulate information within the system seamlessly and adapt to change promptly.

 Sometimes when the system is broken, outdated or have severe defects, it decreases productivity, effectiveness, and efficiency either individually or collectively. The effectiveness of information system depends on humans to define what kind of information that is relevant and how to refine it to maximize its business value, as well as keep tuning it to improve its maturity. A high mature information system streamlines not only information flow, but also mind flow, and transform modern business from static to dynamic, from efficient to agile, and from functioning to delight.

Innovation as a system: Innovation is neither an isolated process nor just the latest technology, but a structural system capable of delivering organization-wide capabilities. At the core of innovation management is a customized business simulation which lets participants experience comprehensive business problems and opportunities associated with creating and implementing ideas. Innovation management system include many critical business elements such as framework, people, process, culture, tools, etc, to manage “systematic innovation” and develop business-wide innovation competencies.

Innovation is not serendipity, the highly innovative companies usually have a powerful innovation navigation system which involves tapping the business ecosystem for a collective perspective and integrating critical business elements into innovation capability and capacity. Innovation ecosystem should fully cover a wide enough directions so that companies can operate within ecosystems for delivering tailored solutions to customers continually.

Meritocracy as a system: Developing high mature digital fit workforce won’t happen overnight, it takes planning, adapting, and innovating to enable true meritocracy that is a system in which people are chosen and moved ahead on the basis of their talent or achievement. Every system is a construct of the mind. Employees believe that the organization operates on a real meritocracy basis and everyone has an opportunity to think independently, work hard, strengthen their own strength and unleash their potential. 

In the siloed industrial age, people are treated as resources and cost, and most works are operational in nature. With emergent technologies, digital organization with blurred functional, geographical, or even industrial territories can break down silo thinking, foster integrity, trust, and transparency. Meritocracy shouldn’t be just a slogan or buzzword, it needs to be a system with all necessary structures and elements such as leadership, process, culture, training, etc, to truly shape a high mature digital workforce. In an ideal digital working environment with democratic meritocracy, self-motivated leaders, teams, and employees have a passion for challenging themselves, advancing their thinking ability, making things happen, catalyzing changes, building on organizational knowledge, discovering innovative ways to do things, and getting recognized by their great achievement.


The focal point of digital management is based on the future trend, based on the varying situations, based on the interconnectivity of subsystems; and based on what the system requires for its long-term sustenance. By leveraging system understanding of digital organization system and subsystem, the business management can become more effective to monitor the overall health of the organization and enforce the cross-functional relationship and collaboration.