Many companies want digital transformation – they want to transform their organization from traditional marketers to stealthy digital marketers – who know the latest tools, are quick to act and think of digital as a part of marketing.
The challenge is how do we transform an organization to make digital a part of the DNA?
We’ve worked with a number of companies on this – and it is no easy feat. But it isn’t as simple as a workshop here or there. It involves a cultural shift in the organization that takes time and investment to manage.
Here is how to begin the steps towards digital transformation for your organization:
1) Organizational Audit
- You can’t fix a problem or build a plan until you know what you are working with. Start with an organization audit to understand where you are now – what are the current knowledge levels, barriers and opportunities?
2) Desired Future State
- Once you know where you stand, the next step is to determine your desired future state – where do you want to be and when? Setting out a clear road-map is vital to your success. It will allow you to build a program that bridges your current state to where you want to be. This often involves setting objectives by job-type or department and identifying competencies required for current and future performance.
3) Executive Digital Training
- It starts at the top. If the executive team doesn’t have the knowledge they can’t manage the organization. Most executives aren’t experts on digital marketing and struggle to understand even the basics.
- Start by training your executive team so that they understand the power and importance of digital.
4) Executive Championing
- Executives should champion digital and set the example internally. It isn’t enough for executives to have the knowledge; they must be internal champions demonstrating that digital is a priority, sharing news and other articles and asking tough questions.
5) Comprehensive Organizational Training
- Organization training should involve multiple touch points through the year. Many businesses want to “transform” their organization with only a single digital marketing workshop or one-time training. A comprehensive training program with multiple live and online touch points is required to really generate success.
6) Internal Champions
- To drive success there should be a number of internal champions and experts throughout the organization. While the entire organization is seeking to grow their knowledge and skills, experts provide deep knowledge and can keep the organization accountable while providing a resource.
- Some large companies bring a small group of champions through an intensive internal training program to empower them to return to their organization and truly be a catalyst for change.
6) Learning Culture
- There should be a culture around constant learning and development. For example creating internal, informal knowledge sharing, providing regular digital updates/digests, etc. The culture should be curious and eager to learn and share ideas.
7) Reward Structure
- The reward structure must be consistent with the desired outcomes. In addition to recognizing digital achievements in the formal reward structure, informal recognition is key. Highlight or feature individuals or teams modeling the desired behavior.
- Perhaps this should be first, but in order to effectively initiate change in an organization you’ll need the resources to do it. Identify resources – people, budget, champions, time and be sure that you truly have the resources to make this a priority.