Digital Transformation: A Reality Check

 

This article is part of a series celebrating the launch of “Building Digital Culture”, a practical guide to successful digital transformation by Target Internet’s founder, Daniel Rowles.

All of us here at Target Internet are huge advocates of digital transformation. The various technologies and experiences we can loosely group as “digital” occupy an ever more central role in consumers’ commercial activities – and in the human experience as a whole. For these and so many other reasons, the vast majority of organisations should be looking to digitally transform, in terms of both their customer-facing facets and their internal processes.

This is not going to be plain sailing

We’ve written this article not to discourage digital transformation, but to manage the expectations of those engaging in a digital transformation.

Digital transformation is exhilarating, important, and potentially of great value to your organisation. It’s also immensely challenging for a number of reasons.

For one thing, there are no easy answers to problems in this new and fast-changing area. Our CEO Daniel Rowles interviewed dozens of organisations whilst researching his book, Building Digital Culture – and none of the journeys described were exactly alike. In a digital transformation, you must find your own, bespoke solutions to problems and opportunities which arise out of the uniqueness characteristics and situation of your organisations.

Another thorny patch you are likely to encounter is getting buy-in from senior stake-holders within your organisation. Whether through a lack of understanding of the benefits of going digital, or sometimes out of personal interest (some stakeholders will cling to the status quo on which their careers were built), you are likely to meet some opposition in your work to drive digital transformation. You’ll have to leverage your diplomatic skill to convince all the key players in your organisation that digital transformation will bring great rewards both for the organisation at large, and for themselves.

You may also encounter technological challenges in your digital transformation work – for examples please see our guide to the tech challenge in digital marketing.

Embrace failure

Projects will fail. This is part of what it means to be digital.

We would urge you to stay bold and adventurous, even if some of your digital projects don’t hit their targets. The crucial thing is that you derive actionable learnings from your failures, and use these insights to turn your future projects into nearer-misses and game-changing successes.

 

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