We want to apologize in advance for saying that there are not shortcuts in your digital journey. It is not enough just replace with a new group of digital tools to keep doing the same practices that you are already doing today. Digital transformation must focus on rethinking core assumptions about how an enterprise works and redefining the intersection between employees, technologies and society.
Companies should setup a digital roadmap with a clear vision of the short-, mid- and long-terms goals, metrics and expected achievements to measure the impact of digital solutions in the transformation process of the core business models. Business strategies must strike a balance between data monetization and customers’ privacy. Going beyond comfort zones requires taking an end-to-end view of your business and operating models. Even though your resources are necessarily limited, the experience of leading companies suggests that focusing on areas that touch more of the core of your business will give you the best chance of success, in both the near and the longer term, than will making minor improvements to non-core areas.
Organizations that make minor changes to the edges of their business model nearly always fall short of their goals. Tinkering leads to returns on investment below the cost of capital and to changes (and learning) that are too small to match the external pace of disruption. In particular, organizations rapidly adopting AI tools and algorithms, as well as design thinking, and using those to redefine their business at scale have been outperforming their peers (see Fig 1). This will be increasingly true as companies deal with large amounts of data in a rapidly evolving landscape and look to make rapid, accurate course corrections compared with their peers.
As we have described in the previous posts, there is still some push-back against the latest technology by some business owner and a common fear to replace in some workforce sectors, but the facts told us that people are using technology more than ever. According to a 2020 tech vision Accenture report , 52% of consumers say that technology plays a prominent role or is ingrained into almost all aspects of their day-to-day lives. In fact, 19% report that technology is so intertwined with their lives that they view it as an extension of themselves. Globally, people spend an average of 6.4 hours online daily.On the other hand, a digital mindset provides an opportunity to accelerate your learning and adoption of technologies inside and outside your organization. Research indicate that people and organizations learn more quickly as a result of network effects. In other words, if more people or organizations are added to a common solution space, then more quickly learning occurs and a faster performance improves. E-learning platforms help organizations to retrain their workforce quickly to follow the new digital priorities and directions and motivate employees to increase their digital skills. This cultural change must look beyond the boundaries of your own company, including your partners, your vendors, your suppliers and customers, read more in “We have a question about your role in digital era“.
Rather than people against the technology, they remain excited and intrigued by it. The challenges are about security, privacy and ethical issues keep people wary of companies’ digital technology innovations and careful with the impact in their lives. For example, many artificial intelligence solutions have been applied to decision-making without transparency, leaving people out of the loop on decisions that directly affect their lives. Furthermore, businesses are developing and deploying technologies using the playbooks of decades past before the tech had a determinant role in the economy, business and society. These closed ecosystems have generated several customer-providers disjointed experiences, but nevertheless, technology, media, and telecommunications companies clearly won the last decade as it is shown in the Fig 2. A decade earlier, three energy companies, three banks, and just two tech companies made the list, so a broad economic and social shift from physical to digital has clearly occurred.
On the other hand, some global trends that helped propel growth in the 2010s are fading. The number of Internet users will not more than double in the next decade, as it did in the previous one. The rate of smartphone adoption has also begun to slow, even in emerging markets. In their place, a mix of productive tailwinds and troublesome headwinds are emerging. AI will almost certainly play an ever-larger role in the 2020s. Furthermore, companies stand to benefit from growth in the cloud, the Internet of Things (IoT), 5G, quantum computing and mass emergence of augmented and virtual reality in businesses and daily activities. Future community posts will be deeply addressing some of the most important tech market trends and their impact in our business and society in the following years.The adoption of the right techs is a key challenge for C-suite leaders in the next decade. Up until now, businesses have largely benefited from following the technology roadmap laid out by digital pioneers. Now, digital technology is evolving from an advantage to a basic expectation and yesterday’s best practices are turning into today’s shortcomings. Companies must deliver more human-focused experiences, in line with what people have come to expect. The success of the next generation of products and services will rest on companies’ ability to elevate the human experience, adapting to the world they have created.
Digital transformation starts in a continuous learning process to be aware what are the current market trends and how fast I could adapted to my business in order to get a competitive advantage. We recommenced the following bestseller “Competing in the Age of AI: Strategy and Leadership” to continue your growth as a digital expert.
In future posts, we will be continue writing about technology and business trends for enterprises. Furthermore, we recommend consulting the following literature to continue your digital transformation journey:
- Designed for Digital: How to Architect Your Business for Sustained Success, MIT review
- The Future Is Faster Than You Think: How Converging Technologies Are Transforming Business, Industries, and Our Lives, by Simon & Schuster
- Artificial Intelligence: The Insights You Need, by Harvard Business Review
- The Year in Tech, 2021: The Insights You Need, by Harvard Business Review
- The Deep Learning Revolution, by MIT Press
- Competing in the Age of AI, by Harvard Review Press
The objective of this blog is to provide a personal vision of how digital transformation trends will be impacting in our daily activities, businesses and lifestyle.