Wednesday, January 18, 2017

What is your Digital Intent

A solution is nothing if the problem is not perceived. Bridging the 'gap of opportunity' between where you are and want to become is a welcomed challenge.

Many organizations are on the journey of digital transformation, but should you spend some time evaluating your digital intent? Why do you need to change? What is your destination? Who are your change agents? How to get there with faster speed? And can you analyze the pros and cons objectively in order to take a successful digital journey?

Start with WHY: Digital transformation is the paradigm shift which needs to start at the mindset level, follow by change attitude and behaviors. Changes could be mandatory, but digital transformation should get going in a more natural way with a steadfast pace, in order to really build a living organic organization with people as cells, and functions like organs. As every successful change program, the overall digital transformation should follow the 'Golden Circle' starting with the WHY? (motivation -why should you change), then addressing the HOW? (process) and "WHAT?" (results) at the end. The big "WHY" step is about framing the problems - Which problems (not just symptoms) do your organization encounter? A solution is nothing if the problem is not perceived, therefore, creating the awareness of the problem is the first step to making a solution being understood and accepted. Digital transformation starts with the realization that where you are currently no long can deliver the business objective and vision of success for your company and your shareholders, especially for the long term. And it is important to scrutinize your digital intent as the first step. And determining what the future needs to look like (what the transformation must look like) is the next step.

Digital impact assessment: Digitization opens a new door and connects within department silos, across the walls, across the streets, across the seas, and across the planet. When things connect in this way, any organization wishing to negotiate a successful journey has to understand what the implications of this degree of connectivity mean to them and which impact could digital technologies make for leapfrogging of their business. Hyper-connectivity is the most critical digital characteristics. They have to understand what it means to their business or organization. Therefore, performing an organizational change impact assessment is very important to understand the 'cultural current state' factors. Then determine what the impacts, risks, and challenges of any proposed changes are. The bigger the change initiative is, the more important to take these into account early rather than late. It’s very important for any high performing organization to get the best alignment and leverage the great human potential that exists or is needed to achieve great results and to tap into the passion of the people! Often change management is proposed from one source in a way that people feel excluded from the decision about change and digital transformation. The active engagement of the team to make a transformation roadmap is critical for making successful changes and transformations.

Change and digital transformation upwards with planning: Change can be an opportunity, but at the end of the day, it needs to be all about moving the business numbers upwards and taking the logical steps for achieving calculable results. Although living in the digital sea, you have to change with the "tide," but you also have to follow the well-defined principles which would guide you in decisions and how you relate to others, with which speed can you swim in the uncharted water, and how to laser focus on the destination without getting lost. Change is inevitable, but you must know how far to bend. You have to engage your sixth sense to decipher when to make the change and to discern what to throw out and what to keep. But most important of all, you need to have a plan, more precisely planning dynamically to embrace uncertainty and emergent properties. Setting timelines, and sometimes resetting those timelines. Because of the increasing speed of changes, the plans will need modification due to unforeseen obstacles. Digital transformation is a long-term journey, it has to be clearly understood in the map's vision to satisfy both short-term gratification and long-term outcomes. Furthermore, if you want meaningful change in an organization, it will not really happen until you get buy-in and sponsorship from senior management and participation from bottom up. Without this, you will get chaos and some temporary change, not nature and smooth digital transformation which can make a leap of the business forward!

Today’s digital organization simply just can’t stand still. Transformation is a journey rather than a destination. Bridging the 'gap of opportunity' between where you are and want to become is a welcomed challenge. Make the digital transformation journey enjoyable, it could be never-ending, because when you reach one destination, the new vision emerges and the new opportunity comes up. Either at the individual or the organizational level, you should never stop learning, being innovative and making progress. That is the quintessence of the digital intent.


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