Many senior executives describe themselves as “personally engaged” in digital transformation in their company. Some even go so far as to relate the process as being exciting and revolutionary. And yet, these same executives are also bemoaning that the digital transformation is not happening fast enough. Hiring big name consultancies may be reassuring, but I think of it more often than not as the blind leading the blind. Just look at how the consultancies themselves are leading their own digital transformation!
Digital transformation hurdles
In many instances, I see two main hurdles that are consistently putting the brakes on digital transformation:
- The brand is without a meaningful “north” or purpose.
- The CEO and C-suite believes that digital is something the team does; that they do not need to be digital themselves.
In the face of a plethora of digital options, without a North, it becomes incredibly difficult to know what choices to make. Moreover, without a purpose, it becomes difficult to mobilize an entire workforce to change its beliefs and habits. And, as far as having the senior executives being on Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook (to say nothing of Medium or blogging) it is as if being digital is derogatory or demeaning. The reason they feel this, I would argue, is that it is about showing their personality and, worse yet, exposing their [digital] ignorance.
More about mindset than processes
Hiring consultants who can help with finding the right software and/or instituting the right processes and protocols may be useful, but the real issue is that it is about changing the mindsets.
Executives need to up their own digital IQ by joining in the conversation, practicing mistakes, listening to angry customers and having the humility to ask naive questions!
Do you agree? Let me know your reactions!