Executive DEVELOPMENT 24 | Developing Leaders Issue 28: 2018 Are You In? Digital Transformation is without a doubt one of today’s most popular business buzzwords. Organizations spend millions on projects to transform processes, products and people. Many leaders employ consultants to define and implement transformation. Some brave leaders tackle the transformation challenge internally – seeking guidance from a business schools to set an inspiring vision, leaders appoint top talent and allocate resources, and set aggressive targets towards a new digital era. All this occurs while being ‘ambidextrous’ – running the current business. What is Digital, and why is it exciting? Simply put, it is an era, when the game will never be the same. It all starts by having digital literally in our hands. Personalized experiences emphasize individual contributions, individual experiences and individual voice. Digital tools afford new levels of creative expression. From filters in Instagram to videos on Facebook, we are all able to rejoice in new levels of creative confidence. We now have no excuse not to experiment – the low cost to try and test ideas makes it a perfect catalyst for the rapid prototyping in an iterative, innovation journey. The Digital Dust of our online interactions provides unprecedented transparency on what we do, opening opportunities for insights into why we do what we do, stimulating reflection and learning. The emitting Digital Sparks – contributions, conversations, and even constructive conflicts – light transformation fires of new insights, iterations, and collective understanding. In the interconnected digital world, we access an army of collaborators who seek to contribute to communities and create movements. In the utopist mind, digital can ultimately encourage a higher purpose, to bring meaning and even social value, to organizations The New Playing Field If finding a common definition of digital is a challenge, defining digital transformation is even harder. Does it mean the same thing to everyone inside the organization? Probably not. Essential to positioning yourself, and your transformation agenda, is to where you want to play? Digitalization of process is today`s table stakes. Although integrating new technologies into the organization is essential for staying competitive, be aware getting people within the organization to use technology more effectively, is not enough to ensure sustainability in an increasingly competitive and disruptive environment. Some leaders may seek to grow market share by acquiring new products & services. They may seek to maximize the existing business models and minimize transformation by keeping the acquired entity away from the center. Other may seek to digitalize existing products and services, requiring deep transformation of existing processes, technologies and people. More progressive (and occasionally aggressive) leaders will look within to create new products and services. Playing the Digital Transformation Game Leading Digital Innovation with Design to Transform Your Organization By Joseph Press