I recently attend a panel conversation at the launch of the RocketSpace Accelerator here in London. When asked what the biggest challenges are to the adoption of innovation and digital for organisations, the response came back: “Culturally willing is more important than technically able”.
I am finding this sentiment appearing more and more in conversations with clients. Many leaders of large, global organisations are having to respond to the multiple pressures of growth, the rise of new competitors, the question of how to utilise new technology, and at the same time how to motivate and engage a workforce with high expectations of their leaders. They feel as leaders they are just not equipped to deal with this new business paradigm.
Capgemini's recent Digital Culture research provides some thought provoking findings. The researchers found that more than 6 out of 10 respondents consider culture as the number one hurdle to digital transformation and there was consistently a lack of congruence between leadership and employees. For example;
- 40% of leadership believe that their organisation has a digital culture
- Only 27% of employees agree
The evidence of this is everywhere
Retail banks are fighting the rise of digital banking and challenger banks, global consumer products businesses are fighting to maintain their brand positioning and the connection to their customers through social media, retailers are figuring out how to retain their market position using digital and data to drive their performance.
The underlying theme is that it’s the ability of the people in these organisation to adapt and contribute to this changing world, to take advantage of the opportunity presented by new technologies and new ways of working, that will ultimately determine if they are successful.
Unfortunately to many this is also the major barrier
This because the way leaders thinking about change and engagement is outdated. The concept of the ‘burning platform’, that we will suffer ‘future shock’ and ‘change overload’ that user will ‘resist’ technology change, are no longer relevant. Today the platform is continually on fire. Change is something that will happen whether we plan for it or not.
We have to build organisations with the capacity to embrace change
The good news is that the context is also changing, as are the tools we can now use to harness change. Technology is a way of life, UX and UI is now intuitive. Technology is not the barrier it once was. We can use it to our advantage when designing for change, replacing the need for large scale technical training on new changes to systems and processes.
Similarly new design and development techniques such as Design Thinking, DevOps and Agile don’t just offer new and creative ways to design and deploy services and applications, they also provide the mechanisms for your organisation, with partners and customers, to actively engage in designing their future and deploying it at speed, replacing the need for laborious stakeholder engagement and communications plans. Fortuitously this way of working is also being embraced by the new generation of employees who are digitally aware and enjoy co-creation well above direction.
Your organisations ability to use these tools to your advantage is key
At Capgemini’s Accelerated Solutions Environment (ASE) and Applied Innovation Exchange (AIE), we believe the only way to design the future is to do it together, be that new applications, new business models, or new ways of working, and we have years of experience using these techniques.
Never has it been more relevant than now to challenge your organisation to ‘be the change you want to be’. We think we are well placed to help you and your team achieve this.