At Differly, we work with many organizations that are facing an urgent need to rethink, how they create and deliver value to customers in a digital economy. Some will call this a transformation (if there are many initiatives to manage at the same time to make the shift) and others will call it a continual process of innovation. Either way, it's really not about technology but rather a business strategy.
If you're a leader thinking about or embarking on a major shift, here are five guiding principles to focus your efforts
1. Always put the customer at the heart of the transformation
Customer behavior is arguably the biggest shift of the digital revolution. How can you design and deliver a better end-to-end experience leveraging both on and offline channels seamlessly? Can you leverage digital technology to remove any barrier, friction, and continually deliver additional value?
2. Align on vision
Before determining the pain points, it’s imperative to spend some time visioning five to ten years into the future to determine the art of the possible within your company. This is less about certainty and more about clarity. Think about how your industry is changing and what major trends have staying power in your industry.
This exercise is about making educated assumptions and should be iterative in nature.
3. Understand your current state against your vision then build a road map to bridge the gaps.
This plan needs to be enterprise-wide, across all silos. The roadmap should focus on the outcome, versus the technology at the outset. Depending on the scope or shift that you are looking for, the roadmap can be definitive in time, such as a few months or much longer-term but with flexibility on how to get there.
The key is not to boil the ocean. Start with foundational projects and aim for continual progress and against that vision.
4. Establish innovation as a discipline
Innovative companies are those who develop a framework and tools to foster the systematic development and evaluation of ideas and bring the best ones to market. This tends to be funded and separate from the day-to-day activities of the company. Organizations that build this discipline develop the ability to respond to opportunities rapidly and learn in rapid cycles.
5. Foster the skills fit for the future
Contrary to popular belief, transformation is more of a challenge of leadership than one of technology. Leading through change and complexity, the ability to adapt and evolve the operating model and in some cases, the business model, takes a shift in mindset.
Transformation is definitely possible without chaos! Watch the full version on my Youtube channel here: Five to Thrive