Saturday, December 14, 2019

A Digital Organization as an Organic System

The digital organization is the organic systems that needs to keep growing and expanding, provide the creative workplace for people to exercise their talent and unlock their potential.

Digital means the exponential growth of information and an abundance of knowledge. The current business paradigm is still dominantly rooted in the mechanistic understanding and framing of hierarchical organizational structures or silo functions. The organization of the future will be organically developed iterating and empowered by an intelligent organizational design that puts values and people before rules and roles. It will be organized as an organic system which is self-adapting, self-renewing, generates patterns, structures, business activities, and above all, creates novelty over time.

Principles over rules; empowerment over control, engagement over command, and dynamic over static: The digital organization is a living thing with the ability to continually change as the world changes, perhaps much like the plants follow the sun. The principles as a compass will guide all levels of the organization to operate more like the human body operates with the cells (employees) and organs (functions) of the organization and provide a guideline of being able to make decisions in a very organic relationship across a distributed organization.

Digital principles encourage autonomy, discovery, and empowerment. The most basic principle is that every system is a construct of the mind. By following a set of well-defined digital principles, the business life cycle could be viewed as resulting in emergent means of reorganizing, refocusing, rebalancing resources, and redirecting people to understand the whole in terms of its underlying functions and structures, its interactions with external systems, its components, the specific interaction among them, etc.

Replace the "glue" of the hierarchy with something more fundamental: The digital organization starts with a transcendent purpose. That something else will be the purpose of the organization, the vision of the future it is creating, its mission, or the deeply held core values, etc. To truly shape a high-responsive and high-innovative digital business for maximizing business potential, you will eventually break down the hierarchical structure of the organization and lead to a unique nature design that allows the organization to morph as living conditions and business capacity change to allow a better fit for the purpose.

To shape a high-performance digital business, the linear business system perception needs to be replaced by the adaptive digital system viewpoint, the interdisciplinary business insight should lead us not only understanding but also predicting. A trans or interdisciplinary approach can be applied to the digital management approach with an integrated multidisciplinary methodology. It enables digital leaders to frame bigger thinking boxes, and approach problems technically, scientifically, and culturally.

Keep evolving and renewing to achieve the state of dynamic balance: The very characteristics of digital new normals are nonlinearity, adaptability, unrepeatability, unpredictability, and denial of control. Overcoming complications and managing complexity become one of the biggest challenges in running the business today.

The digital organizations need to get away from letting things fall through and start creating “integrated wholes.” To stay competitive, forward-looking organizations have to manage digital balance cycles for reaching the next level of organizational maturity. The systematic views of the business world are more balanced and it is sensitive to the emergent factors. Systems Thinking helps business management teams discover the interconnectivity and interdependence of the digital organizational ecosystem, improve business processes, and optimize enterprise competencies.

Digital transformation is full of uncertainty, velocity, complexity, and ambiguity. The new breed of digital organizations needs to become highly adaptive, fast, and antifragile, not just working within the industry, but also permeating the cross-ecosystem which is dynamic, continuous, and interactive. They are the organic systems that need to keep growing and expanding, to provide the creative workplace for people to exercise their talent and unlock their performance and potential.


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