“Digital Transformation”, a term that has been widely used lately in different social spheres. It is natural to consider that digital transformation refers to the management and use of technology, and beyond this, there is no other concept that better defines this management process.
Transformation is the result of organizational change where people, processes and business model understand technology as a tool to generate value among consumers and collaborators.
Taking into account these initial comments, I dive into the first concepts that must be clarified with respect to the understanding that experience has given me to, then dive, into the subject that concerns us in this post. After understanding, living, studying and executing different moments of what we know as digital transformation, I would like to make a first recommendation: do not think of digital transformation as a digital whole.
Beyond the amazement generated by the new technologies of the fourth industrial revolution we are currently experiencing, it is our duty to analyze as an initial step the culture of organizations. Our ideas are born from the human mind, therefore people must be our main focus within this management process. Let’s talk about Transformation as that wide world in which there is not only technology, but also people and processes that must evolve.
My second recommendation points to the fact that we cannot think of transformation as “the latest fad” or “the magic wand” that will solve all the problems we have within the company. Let’s think of transformation as the last call of something that has been going on for a long time.
Transformation is something inherent to human beings and societies. Since our beginnings we have experienced different moments of evolution, of change, of progress, and as the world moves, new ways of doing and thinking come into our hands giving us more impact, more wonder, more opportunities. Now we have democratized information that opens the doors to new perceptions, and these doors lead us to that last call that is nothing more than the voice of the new generations telling us: We are evolving, we need more than what we had before.
What are the reasons that lead us to decide that our companies need to run a transformation management process?
I would like to share with you some essential reasons that will help to better understand these needs:
Users have taken indirect control of businesses:
New generations are demanding more and more. Their needs are new for some sectors, and these needs lead us to think about reinventing our business models. This makes us think about the well-known phrase that dictates that we must adapt to changes and above all adapt to these new consumer habits. At the end of the day, the new generations are the new customers.
From the traditional company to the company of the future:
Most of us have become digital migrants. This step we have taken in this aspect has shown us different ways of doing things. We have worked in companies with a traditional mentality (which is not a bad thing) and some of us have had the opportunity to execute our ideas in companies closer to modernity. There is no need to “demonize” hierarchy, the traditional. These are concepts that have worked and have had important achievements. But now we are moving in another era, in another vision, and it is here where it is necessary to start thinking about flexible, agile, open, transparent, innovative, creative, and above all… HUMAN. People and culture, as the cornerstones of any transformation, are the main objectives to evolve in the so-called companies of the future.
To move forward hand in hand with innovation:
We can understand innovation as a process that modifies existing elements and ideas to improve them and thus generate a greater impact or greater value in the market. That said, companies need to focus their efforts on spaces that help to make proper use of knowledge, from its acquisition and transmission. All ideas are valid. Listening and immediate feedback help to enhance those small moments of lucidity. Let us transmit the proposals to the world of new technologies and take advantage of learning opportunities to generate the value that differentiates us in the market.
From competition to “COOMPETENCE”:
Business secrecy is a thing of the past. Now it is necessary to talk about collaboration, strategic alliances, digital ecosystems, and co-ompetition. Allying with similar companies generates a whole community that will benefit the company’s business to the value generation. This will help to make the broad spectrum of new business models clearer, and those elusive opportunities that we saw passing by without any hope will begin to take shape with new ideas.
Lead yourself, lead others:
Leading is not about delegating to lower the intensity of our daily agenda. A leader is that figure who, thanks to his ability to guide the joint work of a team, manages to INSPIRE these people THROUGH EXAMPLE and with PASSION in the implementation of a transformation. First we must know ourselves very well, each one of us, with our faults and successes. Walk hand in hand with self-evaluation and improve at every moment. If we internalize this, we will be able to lead others through our example so that we can create new leaders. Remember that a leader does not create followers, but creates and drives new leaders.
These are only 5 reasons among many that we can find according to the particularities of each company, but if we analyze these 5 reasons we can easily see people, processes and practices as the 3 fundamental pillars of a transformation.
*Merodio, J. (2016). 9 factores de la transformación digital de la empresa. Editorial Juan Merodio
**Ramírez Navarro, L. (2018). Campeones de la transformación digital: 10 líderes españoles. Editorial Profit
***Definición transformación CEIBA