Stepping up the game for digital transformation

Digital transformation can enable your business to achieve numerous benefits. However, just by saying it does not make it so. Laying out the plan is one thing, but delivering the result is still what decides the game. Here are a few notes on how to ensure that your team is the one taking home the trophy.

Good intentions are not enough

It is easy to consider that when necessary but often wearisome activities are taken over by a digital transformation, it enables the scarce human capital to focus on higher value-added activities. This leads to numerous benefits which can be accounted for when calculating the eventual impact in terms of figures. For example, “companies with highly digitized supply chains and operations can expect efficiency gains of 4.1 per cent annually while boosting revenue by 2.9 per cent a year”, as stated by PwC Strategy& Germany in their article called Industry 4.0.

Although the potential is there, far too many are still only dwelling on digital transformation and not seen through the capitalization of the expected gains. The reasons surely vary a lot but sometimes it may be that an organization mistakenly puts effort merely on painting an eloquent picture stating what are the objectives to increase the level of performance, quality, productivity, you name it, but not on how to actually deliver the result. Even if you have illustrations and plans consisting of seemingly logical roadmaps and whatnot, showing your ambitious objectives, it is not enough. No matter how fancy the plan is, it will not bring any of the targeted improvements by itself. Do not get me wrong, it is good to have a plan for your aspirations, but it does not remove the fact that the gap between the ideal and the reality is still left to be filled. 

In other words, if the focus is only on the good intentions, and not in dealing with the practicalities of the digital transformation together with your colleagues, the picture of the ideal becomes too disconnected and the efforts deployed by your team will surely dissipate. Luckily, leading the digital transformation can be tremendously facilitated only by stepping up the game.

Stepping up the game

Imagine that your team has a carefully laid out game plan and is ready to go up against the opponent called status quo. The referee blows the whistle and the puck hits the ice. More often than not, the game does not end up following the plan so smoothly as you may have envisioned, but you at least may realize that solid effort is required to increase your chances of victory.

The digital transformation inside your organization revolves around the individuals partaking into the game for sure, but do not underestimate the importance of how they are led through the transformation in the agile environment such as your business and supplier ecosystem.

Here are a few notes which you could take from the perspective of placing the team onto the centre and by assuming the role of a coach to attain the benefits of digital transformation.

Agree on the why. Begin with your company executives and work your way to the layers of the organization to establish the cause, why we are doing this. Ensure that each important player, whether they are forward, defence or goalie, are motivated and fully agrees to partake on the game.

Develop an understanding. As the game starts, it could be that the team has never played hockey before. You must be open to discovering more insight into how and where we could be better by developing your team’s understanding of the game.

Adjusting to change within change. When something new is being created, people tend to have a scenario heavily infused in their minds which they have finally come to terms with. However, if you and the team anchor themselves deeply into one easy outcome, the reaction to a possible setback is more severe. Lower the barrier in your team to adopt new information transparently which could make the result even better. 

Be present. Do not watch the game via tv or better yet, from a recording when you are responsible for the immediate result. You must be close by where the action is to swiftly respond to whatever may be the situation, attack formation needs finetuning, a player needs guidance, the goalie needs a better stick. However, do not go onto the ice and start micromanaging – you know what will happen.

There are much more which could be addressed concerning this topic, but these are few examples to consider when there are people tackling the obstacles set by the status quo. And remember, that many of the known games usually last more than just one period. Therefore, divide your journey into more manageable parts to assess what has been done and what is still ahead of you. When you have created a culture where players can outdo themselves naturally, no matter what you are up against, the odds of winning the game will certainly begin to soar.

Digital transformation can bring your business to another level, and if you are ready for the game, the expected gains will be definately yours to celebrate.

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