Saturday, July 16, 2016

Three Hybrid Elements in Running a Digital IT and Organization

A hybrid organizational structure can bring greater awareness of the intricacies and the systemic value of organizational systems, processes, people dynamics, technology, resource allocation, etc.

With emergent digital technologies, organizations large or small reinvent themselves to become more agile, flexible and innovative. Digitalization doesn’t mean just tear down all the old things in the previous era, in reality, it means to strike the right balance between the new way and the “old way,” the physical building and the virtual platform, the face-to-face communication and the always-on online presence. Here are three HYBRID elements in running a digital organization.  
The hybrid decision-making style: Digital businesses are hyper-connected and over-complex, with overloading information and unprecedented uncertainty, and continually evolving in the digital dynamic ecosystem. Hence, it’s much more difficult to make effective decisions with the traditional top-down, one-way management style. Decision agility is dependent on better access to the right information, at the right time - but also access to the right people. Using the traditional ways of working in the silos and through the rigid processes simply won't have enough time to produce the input for the decision makers. More often than not, you need to allow a 'bottom-up' approach to collect sufficient information and leverage collective wisdom.  And then you can proceed to environmental, organizational and sociological factors that define the environment in which the decisions are made. Each of these opens the door to a variety of views. And without proper data or other input, no good decisions can be made. Business managers also have to live with the consequences of making the wrong decisions faster! Taking the hybrid styles to make the leadership team's thinking visible by using a more democratic process for decision making will dramatically reduce or eliminate the gaps. Digital is the age of people. In complex operations and organizations, group dynamics lead to final results and performance, especially if the involvement of the activity is related to group inputs and processing!

The hybrid innovation management style: HYBRID is the digital fit style for managing innovation as well because a digital innovation portfolio includes both incremental or efficiency driven innovations, as well as radical and breakthrough innovations. Although all innovations are disruptive of something or some behavior to some degree. From a portfolio management point of view, companies need both incremental product/service innovations to thrive but also desire large, disruptive innovations for a quantum leap. Managing innovation requires leaders, either formal or informal, to shepherd an idea through several phases of development, knowing when to move forward and when to return to an earlier phase. It is hard to think of any innovation as not a hybrid, a combination of something old with something new or a number of new things. Innovations in the digital age are coming at seemingly a much faster pace, more change, more potential disruption, but the patterns and rules of communication are pretty much the same. You could consider all innovation by hybridized in that sense. Precisely that’s why it is an orthogonal concept to disruption. The broader the scope, scale, and impact of the change, the more one leans towards calling such change an innovation.

The hybrid organizational structure and management: Organizational structure underpins business processes, business processes underpin organizational capability, organizational capability underpin strategy execution. With emergent enterprise social platform and the variety of collaboration tools, The impact of digital/social technology is right on- that the future of the organization will become more ‘virtual.’ Businesses also need to fine-tune their business structure and organizational system concentrated on the cultural system, moral system, social system, material system, functional system, and the holistic digital ecosystem, in achieving the next level of agility and maturity. Nowadays the reality of digital is a hybrid nature of organization well mixes the virtual social platform with the physical functional structure to enforce cross-functional collaboration and dot-connecting innovation. Hierarchical structures will be transcended to the interconnected, network structure. Look at all the elements, including the human element, as an integrated system and functions as an organic living thing. A hybrid organizational structure can bring greater awareness of the intricacies and the systemic value of organizational systems, processes, people dynamics, technology, resource allocation, supply-side variables, market variables, economies of scale, etc.   

Building a hybrid digital organization starts with shaping a “hybrid mindset” at the top leadership level, to avoid any “extreme thinking,” silo management style, and inflexible methodology. It is about the balance of stability and changes; leadership decisiveness and collective wisdom, best practices (always do things this way) and next practices (discovering the better, digital way) and it’s a practical perspective to manage a digital transformation smoothly.


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