Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Illustrate the Characteristics of the Digital Business Open System

Digital transformation is more like a journey than a destination, it is no surprise that there are many confusions and frustrations on the way. 

Digital transformation is the state of dynamism, continuum, and interaction. There are both visible and invisible, hard and soft factors for making a seamless shift from static to dynamic; from industrial-segregation to digital modularization. As a matter of fact, the whole business ecosystem needs to communicate, negotiate, reciprocate, and cooperate with each other to harness transformative change. 

Top management needs to illustrate the very characteristics of the digital business open system, lead proactively and become really creative on how they architect and implement changes and achieve high performance business results.

Conception: With emerging digital technologies and a sea of information, today’s digital leaders and professionals need to be open-minded to embrace new concepts and ideas, demonstrate the strategic intelligence to conceptualize the future state of the organization, set the direction, connect the previously unconnected dots, create the blue ocean to provide a strategic business advantage, or envision a solution to a perceived or not-yet-perceived need.

Despite our present condition and realities, we must never abandon the hope that generations to come will view things differently, and human society needs to take an evolutionary journey to make continuous change. Create new concepts, share knowledge, have the big picture type of perspective and gain an in-depth understanding of the past and the future as information permits. An open business system has the ability to view the whole ecosystem with all its dependencies and interconnectivity; it has the ability to identify key leverage points where the non-proportional impact can be made, as well as the ability to tie all these things together in order to develop actionable plans.

Reflection: Every organization has a story: a set of beliefs, values, myths, history, and judgments about the inner world of work, and the external environment around them. Either at individual or business level, you need both thinking modes and need to build in time for reflection which enable you to be conscious of your circumstances, and allows you to perform in a strategic and informed manner as a project is making progress from need to concept to products.

There are long term business transformation, mid-term organizational change capacity development, or short-term sprint to reach certain performance goals. Reflection before embarking upon change initiatives enables the company to focus on strengthening its strength and building their change competency. In many ways, the organization is a reflection of the personality of its top leaders. Top leadership team should clarify their vision, create their mottos, and take a stepwise change management scenario.

Adaptation: Consider a digital business is a self-organized but interlaced open system, there are heuristics and rules that work for it (entity, organization, cohort, culture, etc.) The only problem about the future is that it is usually here before we are ready for it. Far too many of the organizations have tended toward being "reactive," not "proactive." As each organization has a different level of consciousness about problems, information and knowledge maturity, and reacts to environmental changes with behaviors that are strictly linked to the information they have and adapt to the ever-evolving digital dynamic.

Some organizations unconsciously choose to adapt or not. It is possible to see what enables a self-adaptive organism is an information-driven process feeding and sustaining it to gain the business consciousness, and even reach the state of “super consciousness.” How successful the organization can handle frequent disruptions depends on how fast and capable they can process information and adapt to changes with incremental consciousness as well as how proactively they can possibly apply themselves in the dynamic business world to drive changes effectively.

Contextualization: To solve business problems large or small, gain a contextual understanding of where all the functional boundaries are, the scope and context of the problem, diagnose the root causes, see a larger system with interactive pieces and “conflict” goals, and create the relevant context to make an everlasting solution. Otherwise, you perhaps only fix the symptom or cause more side effects later on.

In the dynamic digital business, logic is often nonlinear and multifaceted, change is inevitable. To fix real problems and drive progressive changes, understanding context is often the first and the critical step in framing issues. To scale up, it’s particularly important for businesses matching their vision and tailor their own need to develop a set of best or next practices. These practices might be different across organizations, the key is “context.” If the best practice you want to adopt is to be implemented in the same context, it could work.

Simplification: In a corporate world, you will find the attitude of complicating things in systems and procedures and people love to hang on to the complications but they often decelerate business speed. Overcoming complications and managing a variety of complexity become one of the biggest challenges in business today. Try to analyze what the impact of complexity is on a system (process, structure, customers); also look for the impact of removing some of the complications to improve business efficiency.

In the businesses, there are always constraints, so simplicity implies to build as little as possible (as little output as possible, to maximize the amount of work not done) and maximize outcome to benefit customers. Something more balanced and interpreted is called for, to keep things simple, but not simpler. The dynamic digital organization needs to be simplified and elaborated in a well-organized effort for adapting to emergent business changes in its own functions, structures, and behaviors. You are not only building the system but also renewing and maintaining the system for long-term.

Diversification: All ambitious businesses strive to unlock their full digital potential by enforcing diversification and collaboration. Diversification is the hidden dimension to spark innovation, and reach the next level of business growth and organizational maturity. In such a global climate, leaders should always look for the capabilities and skills that they don't have so that they can build a winning team and complement each other. Those businesses that are unwilling to genuinely embrace diversity, or unable to know how to tap their diverse resources, or recognize merit and ideas, will not be able to survive, leave alone thrive.

In fact, having an inclusive culture always helps us learn from diverse people, and understand the value of harnessing the differences. Giving people the tools and experience of how to effectively communicate and build trust across these diverse cultures are usually essential and the key to reaping the benefits of digital organizations and dynamic open systems.

Collaboration: The most effective digital workplace is in which sharing and collaboration are the new norms, understand, and recognize that everyone plays a “piece of the pie.” With emerging enterprise social platforms and tools, collaboration happens in the space between people in relationships receptively and thoughtfully interacting with interest and caring for one another’s needs, co-develop great ideas or co-solve tough problems.

To break down silos, digital leaders have to not only provide clear process guidelines but also see that the teams are embracing cross-functional collaboration and taking people-centric effort. Collaboration becomes a whole lot easier if you give people the time to hear what they have to say without constant distractions or unhealthy competitions. In fact, the mass collaboration through the digital platform is already driving changes to enterprise systems and exposing them to societal changes as well.

Revitalization: A highly complex and dynamic business system needs to be elaborated in a well-organized effort, enables emergent business changes in its own behavior, function, and structure. Revitalization can help the business overcome maturity challenges, deal with paradoxes and pathologies across individuals, teams, loose groups, and network-enterprise, deliver impressive business outcomes and unlock its performance.

To improve the organizational responsiveness, changeability, and flexibility, design a viable digital organization for striking the right balance between solid and flow, enjoying a powerful tailwind to improve business performance and speed, and bringing companies into the full-spectrum of dynamically transforming a mixture of systemic spanning and systemic intensity related capabilities. People need to be developed and grown into high mature professionals so that the positive energy can flow and collective human capabilities can really be transformed.

Synchronization: Information confluence means breaking down functional silos or geographical borders to streamline data flow and make sure information integrity, consistency, and synchronization. The high-responsive organization can synchronize their business, more precisely, information, at the multiple levels of the business and present the recognizable digital rhythm to keep the business moving forward at the right pace.

It is possible to see what enables a self-adaptive business open system is an information-driven process feeding and sustaining it. Information further refines business insight and streamlines idea flow, enforces communication, and realizes business benefits and value. The insight-driven digital transformation can create the synchronization of all functions running seamlessly at the multiple levels of the organization and run a smart and mature digital organization.

Digital transformation is more like a journey than a destination, it is no surprise that there are many confusions and frustrations on the way. It has to deliberately cultivate these business traits above, facilitate well thought-out planning and well-defined digital principles to deal with unprecedented uncertainty and make a seamless digital paradigm shift.


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