Originally posted on LinkedIn | 29 January 2019
Digital Transformation sits on the Board meeting agenda for most businesses in 2019. Consultants talk about digital roadmaps. ‘Experts’ blog about it. Disruptors which have managed break-out growth at the expense of competitors swear by it. But what does Digital Transformation really mean?
Keeping up to speed with rapid shifts in customer behaviour, the relentless innovation from technology providers, and tactics of competitors can make this a confusing area. Businesses winning over their customers and aligning their teams focus on three core principles.
Put the Customer First
The old adage in retail 'the customer is always right' is true for all businesses. Without the customers' needs in mind, we can get carried away creating products and services which appear cool, but fail to improve the customer experience and meet a customer need.
Many business waste resources and damage their reputations to taking an ‘inside out’ approach - investing in the features their execs and agencies rate highly without taking the time to understand customer’s needs, habits, or frustrations, the ‘outside in’ approach. Whether it’s gathering feedback, creating customer personas, or examining browsing and shopping data captured already, ask yourself whether you are really putting your customer first. Remember, while satisfied customers can like, share and recommend, unhappy are more likely to do all that and more to voice their dissatisfaction with your business.
Just ask: Are really putting your customer first?
Agility and Experimentation
Ever smarter algorithms, machine learning and AI to drive ways of understanding what really works, and improving the effectiveness of what you deliver, and the efficiency of your people. Teams with creative problem solving skills learn quickly, create experiments to test their understanding of the world, and adjust their direction to accelerate the pace of change. What’s the best way to handle a customer service query? Is it a coffee with your Relationship Manager, an appointment with the call centre or a 24/7 chatbot?
We need to start with a strategy, but be prepared to adjust constantly based on outcomes. If you keep your eyes open and take advantage of your team’s skills you’ll see places to improve and opportunities to take. If you’re stuck to your original strategy, it’s guaranteed to fall short as things in the field change without you.
Our workshops all feature ‘kickstarter’ projects: 90 day initiatives for your teams to tackle with a view to testing a specific part of your digital experience, learn what wins or fails, and share learnings with the rest of the business. This approach de-risks the investment needed in expensive digital investments by testing and learning before committing hefty budgets.
Learning and Adaptation
Continuous learning can close the gap on finding the right tools and technologies to use and knowing how to deploy them. This is absolutely critical: businesses should be up-skilling their teams to attract, retain and maximise the value of digital talent.
There are so many ways that teams can expand their digital skills: online webinars, face-to-face workshops, podcasts, events and more. As teams learn more, they are able to adapt to the new situations around them; they can anticipate challenges and apply experiences from other sectors and markets to their own businesses.
Businesses with highly skilled, curious and confident digital teams are quick to build creative solutions and rapid iterative prototype solutions to problems that might sidetrack a team without that knowledge and mindset.
The Get Stacked Conference from @B2BMarketing is a great opportunity to sharpen your digital skills. The event features 35 industry speakers, and our full day Digital Transformation workshop on 20th March. The interactive workshop will tackle the three priorities above, and the following transformation challenges:
If you want to start learning, come join Rob Thurner, CEO of Burn The Sky, at the Get Stacked Conference, use our 10% off discount code when you sign up for the #b2bgetstacked conference.
Discount code: thurner10