Bold Enough to Lead: The Urgency of Digital Transformation

Urgency of Digital Transformation

Consider this, an Intervention. Today’s business leaders need to respond to the urgency of digital transformation before it’s too late.


FINDINGS FROM THE 2015 DIGITAL BUSINESS GLOBAL EXECUTIVE STUDY AND RESEARCH PROJECT By Gerald C. Kane, Doug Palmer, Anh Nguyen Phillips, David Kiron and Natasha Buckley states that:

  • The vast majority of workers want to work for digitally enabled organizations
  • Digitally mature organizations are four times likely to provide employees with needed skills than others.
  • For digitally affluent companies, taking risks is a cultural norm while embracing failure is considered a prerequisite for success

Two years later, there’s still evidence that ‘too many priorities, security concerns and insufficient tech skills’ are still considered barriers to adopting technologies, and for over a third of companies, this is reason for concern.

As a technology adoption consultant, I’m always astonished by how many organizations still use Excel spreadsheets to carry out business processes. Unless files are tagged with 12 syllable naming conventions, it’s a fact that 75% are veiled immediately upon storing them. As these open files are copied and re-copied, sent round the world attached to emails, being overwhelmed and citing security issues is an awkward excuse not to adopt a centralized solution


“By the time it’s obvious you need to change, it’s usually too late” says John Chambers, Cisco’s CEO. “Very often you have to be willing to make a big move even before most of your advisors are on board. You have to be bold. And you need a culture that lets you figure out how to win without a blueprint”

It’s not simply about technology. It’s about the strategy of not ‘waiting’. It’s about embracing a culture of risk and about leadership that is bold enough to tackle moving forward, and not standing still.

Leaders must understand that more can be accomplished at the intersection of business and technology. They need to be prepared to lead by conceptualizing how technology can transform their business.

46% of organizations state that digital permeates most of their activities, empowering competitors, invigorating startups and ceding control to the consumer.

According to the Digital Intelligence Briefing: 2017 Digital Trends in association with Adobe, 70% of companies plan on optimizing the customer journey over the next few years. Those planning on continuing to use offline methods are few. Those who follow through on digital plans will clearly win this competition.

During the past two years, the number of organizations describing themselves as ‘mobile-first’ has more than doubled. It’s not a matter of when to start the journey to digital transformation it’s now just a matter of starting. European countries are already well on their way.


Digitally maturing companies behave differently than their less mature peers. Digitally maturing organizations are committed to collaborative cultures. Leaders make it a priority to consume resources they need to develop digital skills and know-how.

Like any journey, it helps to plot your current location and imagine what your company is capable of when provided digital tools. Taking time out for the first step is the most difficult. It’s never been more important. Organizations that are not on the digital train by 2020 risk losing it all. That’s just over two years away.

For most companies, an easy first step may be to adopt a CRM. Learn what one is and why every company, large and small, needs one to thrive in the upcoming decade. Why? Your customers are insisting on it!

There’s more risk in not changing. And like anything, just ask and you will find, help is close by!

Respond to the urgency and apply digital transformation to your business. This site has resources and coaching services that can help.

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