Monday, August 1, 2016

How to Take a Structural Approach to Handle Unstructural Digital Disruptions

Digital disruptions are inevitable, and digital transformation is unstoppable.

Digital disruption is frequent and unstructured, businesses just have to get used to the new normal and learn how to deal with them proactively. Obviously, there is no one size fits all solution, and "boil the ocean" approaches seldom deliver expected results. So how to take a structural approach in dealing with digital disruptions, and what’s the logical scenario to manage digital transformation seamlessly?

Manage digital strategy execution continuum: Digital strategy executions are not linear steps, but an iterative continuum because you have to evolve the emergent trends and adapt to potential disruptions. A good strategy is a shareware, not a shelfware, managers must be in the room building the strategy through collaboration and consensus building, they should facilitate ideation session that uncovers the big and innovative ideas that disrupt complacent and conventional thinking. The challenge is to prioritize what you know about and keep an eye open for signs of things you don't know about. Every company needs a structural strategic planning process and a healthy management cycle to benchmark that plans to monthly operations, even weekly when done well.

Change Management as an ongoing capability: How successful the organization can handle digital disruption depends on how fast and capable they can adapt to changes. One issue is that organizations and people in them expect the change and the transformation to someday "be over"- it never is. If it was, the organization would simply stand still, never innovate and never make progress. The organizational journey is where the juice is in the organization, not just the destination. Destinations are for those checking in at arrivals and checking out at departures without enjoying the challenge and delight of the bit in between. Thus, organizations need to take a structural approach for building change management as an ongoing capability, improving agility and individuals’ changeability as well. It’s important to build an effective business system that creates a high-performance culture with proper disciplines. If digitization does not succeed in changing the mindset, beliefs, and behaviors of management, the change efforts will be deemed to fail.

Take a structural approach to integrate talent management/performance management/culture management/knowledge management to a holistic people management solution: With increasing speed of changes and continuous disruptions, organizations must focus on building people-centric business via leveraging the emergent digital pipelines for recruiting, and applying enterprise social platform to enforcing cross-functional communication and collaboration. There seems to be so much uncertainty in a digital working environment today, but also have more alternative ways to do things. There are different recruitment methods, greater transparency, more engagement and retention initiatives, training and development at every level, the integration of cross-training and knowledge sharing opportunities, having a plan for succession, and keeping up with technological advances, those that are value-added to business success, are major factors of the new business norm. So a structural people management approach needs to play an important role to 1) Involve, 2) Engage, 3) Emerge and Evolve 4) Evaluate and 5) Embrace the change.

Digital disruptions are inevitable, and digital transformation is unstoppable. Organizations shouldn’t just response to them in a reactive way. The forward-thinking organizations have to take a structural approach in building organizational level changeability and implementing strategy iteratively. And most importantly, they have to build a “Change culture,” to get their people ready for change, encourage innovation and improve overall business agility and maturity.


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