The technical truth about Digital transformation. Is digitising your business a need of the hour or a forceful competition impact on the entrepreneurship world.
The truth is that many businesses are simply going digital. We use all the latest digital tools and the hope and belief that if we blog enough or Facebook enough or have the right CRM system that leads to success, it doesn’t. We know that strategy creates competitive advantage. People and our culture of innovation is what sustains it. And technology is the delivery agent and many of those digital businesses have cottoned onto that fact.
Some another word for digital businesses is digital innovators. So what is it that? They do that most of us don’t do. Well they perceive that this new land of digital innovation there is a journey that most organizations can go towards it. Those that are doing digital are stuck because they are have just got the best technology.
They happen to have the word digital and believe that it should be allocated to either a marketer or some technologists who then deliver the websites and the social channels and the tools that are needed in order for the business to operate.
That does not create competitive advantage. The leadership part has been missing. Others find that the challenge is a little bit more daunting. They find that the competition is starting to force them to make other changes they get the latest technology.
They follow all the marketing trends at Microsoft 365 they have got oracle asap whatever it happens to be. And they’re pulled by what they’re told by the technologists is going to lead them to a new land that creates a little bit of a gap.
It modernizes the business but it doesn’t necessarily create competitive advantage. Those businesses that have got to closer to this new land have gone through simpler process of digital transformation. Their leadership has taken control of the strategic decision-making.
They’ve tried to encourage a culture of innovation within their organization. They’ve changed their business processes they’re using data to help them to define if there’s market opportunity, who the competitors are.
That must be they’re looking for cycles of innovation. They have new business models that they’re taking on and they tell the technologists what it is they want and all of this tends to lead to create a much more successful digital business.
So now we’re going to take a little look at a case study of someone who has gone through this process. In this case study I’m going to use the name of a hypothetical character Eleanor and her business which is not her actual real name and it’s not a real business name but I can guarantee you that the story is completely what is happening in many cases. Here all of the stuff that you would see in a commercial kitchen is her business.
The problem that Eleanor is facing is that she could create a relationship with a hotel or a restaurant, send them the quote for the equipment, charge them an installation fee and then they would buy it.
Now they can google it find out the exact cost from a range of competitors from a range of countries even the second-hand price on eBay and make decisions which are forcing down her margin. She then has to do something about it and as wondering what it is that will take to make the change in her business.
She has been doing digital to this point that she uses the seven principles of digital transformation framework and she goes trying to transform her business to make it more successful. So as I said she’s doing digital she happens to have her ecommerce site going she happened to have her AdWords running jammed up her social channels going but it really wasn’t changing the situation much.
She then tried to adopt with new technology where she had better logistics better supply chain better automated marketing but again this improved her business marginally but didn’t give her this massive rapid growth.
She was still finding it to be a very competitive situation. When she went through the digital transformation framework she was able to radically change business.
What happened to Erin was that she discovered that there was a wave of change to the industry. Hotel and restaurant did not understand what 300 Watts versus 160 watts meant when it came to energy consumption and the relationship with money. Eleanor realized that with renewable energies carbon tax credits new methods for purchasing equipment that was through lease options.
the ability to reduce energy cost through induction rather than gas. the ability to change how we ventilate and kick commercial kitchens using renewable energies attached to the roof heat extractors and many other things that she could massively reduce the cost of ownership of a kitchen.
In fact, she could reduce the cost of ownership so much that she could offer the kitchen for free all she asked for was let me take a look at your energy bills right now. I will replace your equipment for you and you keep paying me what you would have been paying in those energy bills and taxes and waste management costs.
This changed the game she became a digital innovator now. Where’s the digital in all of this five years ago she would not have been able to get baseline energy usage. She would not have been able to get the new technologies to create renewables with inside the organization’s solar panels on roof wind turbines to help.
She had to create partnerships. She had to understand tax credits she had to create a mechanism that allowed her sales force to be able to go onto the road to sell this and by the time she has done this kind of leadership the competitors aren’t even at the starting gate.
She’s created 2 to 3 years of sprayer space an opportunity where she practically goes uncontested. She sees rapid growth in her business and has now become a digital business because the leadership, the communications people and the technologists collaborated with the deliberate effort to innovate and change the business model to become made business.
Eleanor’s business is incredibly successful. She uses technology more than I’ve ever seen anyone else but she’s been using the technology because it pushes her business further and the technologists respond by creating better efficiencies within the organization that to me is what makes a digital business.
We’ve understood the digital transformation is not necessarily about technology. It’s about how we lead our organizations. It’s a way of thinking. It’s a way of being able to progress innovations quickly and rapidly in order to add competitive advantage or change to our organizations to put that into some form of structure. This is what I believe digital transformation is about.
Its where strategy is used to create competitive advantage. Technology does not create competitive advantage. People and our culture of innovation is what allows us to sustain that competitive advantage. Technology which is all important and communications is simply the means by which it’s delivered. Some organizations like to look at the technology and let it force them into a particular direction.
Be inspired by what the technology can do but the high-performing digitally transformed organizations typically look at it from a perspective that they tell the technologists what they would like it to do and their leaders and let that be done.
How do you inspire a workforce? How do you bring all of the challenges together in one particular place? How do you stop yourself defaulting to tactics when somebody always wants just to fix the problem?
You do it using digital transformation frameworks. Know at the highest level we are going to look at it like this that technology is going to be ever-present but let’s stop talking about it. Technology will be the underpinning of everything but let’s just assume it will be there where most organizations feel and where the great high performers succeed is that they address it this way.
They start with their digital business strategy. They use frameworks which will come across in a second down at the area of digital business strategy. Then they look to make sure that their people understand what’s happening within the framework that’s been used. They diagnosed problems how they’re going to perform to help them overcome the diagnosed problems and their people are given the capacity in order to make transformation and change happens.
This helps to inspire the culture and of course Communications is very important. At this point most businesses that simply do digital don’t have to realign. They just simply apply technology on top of what they’re doing. They’ve got a website. They’ve got Facebook and Twitter. They’re happy with what they’re doing.
Most highly successful transforming organizations have to actually physically realign their organization. They have to reposition their logistics network or they’ll have to take on new departments or close existing departments.
They have to have the experiments in data to make sure that the business alignment combined with the right culture and in line with the strategic planning all work. At that point we are then able to understand the capability gaps in our team. What is it our team need in order to perform what’s needed to execute the strategy and only then should we really be considering innovation.
Because innovation should be focused at solving strategic challenges. One may be that were not competitive and that’s fine but identify the areas that we’re not competitive and try to see if innovation can help solve that problem and finally when we have innovated when we have created a transforming organization we will find that the competitive advantage that we’ve created or the changed it needs to be articulated to using more advanced methods of communication. of course delivered through technology.
Let me put this in a different context for you. Before we actually take a look at a strategic framework for delivering strategy if we help to understand that the digital business strategy is part of the main plan of what we’re trying to do but it will not work unless we get cultural alignment and organizational alignment and innovation to come and help us. Then we have to get technology gear turning, in order to help create the change.
Then the change will lead to happier stuff where they have both autonomy, mastery and purpose. Because we’ve redefined what they’re doing. We’ve got better leaders who happen to have measurable progress they happen to have data-driven decision making and actionable strategy and of course we’ve got happier customers.
They’re more engaged. They find what we do more interesting. They’re co-creating in many cases with us and it’s a collaborative work force. So if that is the outcome that we can achieve by using structured methods of digital transformation where do we start go back to the slide that we had before this. Bottom bit digital business strategy that’s where we start.
The world’s most advanced digital business strategy planning framework is the seven principles of digital business strategy. First of all, we have to plot out where we are now and then compute the potential journey that we’re going to go on. This is a leadership issue. This is not a technology issue. This is leadership issue and the leaders do not need to understand technology to lead digital transformation.
Each of these moves have very defined set players of challenges that must be overcome and resources that are going to be needed to help overcome them. this simple instruction map allows us to see where we are now and where we’re going and better still the change state as we move is quite often represented in data that we can see in our organization.
We want to know ourselves what the customer wants. If there’s evidence what marketplace already has here, the competition and can we elbow them out of the way and what resources do we have to make this happen and we’re finding increasingly in particular with large organisations they under resource what is their strategic ambition.
Before the project starts ideally we’re looking for where the heart sets in between knowing yourself, your customer, your marketplace and your resources. Get that bit defined along with your journey.
You tend to have strategies that lead to much greater success as we go through each of those little points have a set of markers and those mile markers start to end up becoming projects and the projects become tasks and now our entire organization understands the personal role that people must take the personal responsibilities in order to create the change.
The tasks can quite often link with data so we know if the task is achievable. Too many times people applaud the completion of a task when what we should become applauding is the completion, come that the task was designed to do and of course in the digital world that’s much more achievable.