Sunday, February 16, 2020

The Multidisciplinary Management Approach to Run Digital Organization

Dealing with the significant challenge of digital transformation requires accelerated digital mindsets, leveraging multidisciplinary knowledge and insight, taking an end-to-end response and a structural approach.

The digital business dynamic is full of uncertainty, velocity, complexity, ambiguity, fierce competition, and continuous disruptions. Unlike the traditional organizations often being perceived as mechanical systems keep spinning; digital organizations are the living things keep evolving, and the dynamic business ecosystem could be at the tipping point for the digital paradigm shift.

Thus,  the linear business system perception needs to be replaced by the adaptive digital system viewpoint, and the interdisciplinary business insight helps us gain an in-depth understanding of nonlinearity as the very characteristic of the digital organization. Here are multidimensional management disciplines.

Business innovation as a management discipline: Innovation is not serendipity, but a management process and discipline. Applying discipline to innovation is to figure out how to manage innovation in a structural way. Businesses across industrial sectors, especially in the mature, large corporations and within that environment, innovations can range from small to game-changers. Also, innovation is rarely an individual action; rather, it is a team effort, often across multiple organizational silos. Thus, you need to manage innovation in a structural way via a good alignment of innovators, disruptive technologies, and rigorous, but not overly rigid processes.

There are three success elements in innovation management: An innovation strategy, a culture to support or even drive innovation, and an innovation management mechanism. In practice, the innovation strategy is not a thing or even a state, but a process of lining up the culture of creativity, people would like to take the calculated risks in experimenting with a new way to do things, with the business model they create to get it done.

IT as engineering disciplines and practices: IT is a system that has an emergent property of individual human beings making sense of experiences in time and place. Running a high performance IT organization is about how to apply scientific logic and engineering discipline to break big business problems down into deliverable chunks for presenting value to the business at regular intervals. IT engineering practices and disciplines require scientific approaches and structural problem-solving capabilities.

IT is an engineering discipline, as always, but adding a more enriched digital context for the paradigm shift. IT leaders need to be well prepared to constantly realign technology against the enterprise’s business needs, orient IT organization for realignment, and apply the tailored methodologies to solve emerging problems effectively. The balance of art and science in IT is how to enforce scientific discipline, but also make continuous efforts on building better products/services and improving IT maturity.

Governance as an enabling discipline: Digital transformation is a long journey full of uncertainty, velocity, complexity, and ambiguity. The pervasive digital means change is the new norm and happens the whole time, and thereby delivering faster and increasing market share. The governance concern is that businesses will lose sight of their prime purpose. Thus, governance as a discipline is a living breathing entity that continually requires stroking and attention.

With the exponential growth of information, the governance discipline has in the past continually changed its shape and matured, there is no doubt it will continue to do so as the winds of change in the corporate world blow across the business community. Management and governance are complementary. Governance as a discipline is an enabling vehicle that provides a platform for determining sound corporate behavior and structured decision-making for improving business maturity.

Dealing with the significant challenge of digital transformation requires accelerated digital mindsets, leveraging multidisciplinary knowledge and insight, taking an end-to-end response, and a structural approach. It enables leaders to frame bigger thinking boxes and manage the digital business successfully by integrating the management methodologies technically, scientifically and culturally,


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