Digital Transformation as Seen through the Lens of Your People

play button graphicIn the latest edition of our series on the Human Side of Digital Transformation, we are going to address how workplace agility, commitment, and coaching/collaboration may enable your people and organization to achieve greater digital literacy and productivity.

Workplace Agility

Traditional change management approaches focus on multi-month projects and rely on communications designed to increase awareness about upcoming changes. Digitally transformed enterprises must be more agile in preparing for and adapting to frequent workplace changes. Agile change management is defined as the integrated practices and processes that manage evolving requirements and workforce needs/preferences. Research conducted by Bersin by Deloitte found that agile organizations grow revenue 37% faster, and generate profits 30% more quickly than non-agile companies. Therefore, instilling agile concepts at multiple levels is an approach to consider – it should result in a healthier attitude towards embracing change.

The Importance of Commitment

As you prepare for a digital transformation, you as a change/learning leader will require commitment from all levels within your organization. Commitment is marked when associates say that they are willing to (try and) change not just their behavior, but also their mindset in the workplace, even when it feels challenging or uncomfortable. Employees must then agree to participate in sessions (focus groups, coaching sessions, or training workshops) designed to support making those changes happen. Finally, you need to put in place ways to measure when those changes in mindset have been achieved.

Coaching & Collaboration

It’s quite possible that not everyone in the workforce will be able to make the leap, so your human capital management teams should be enlisted to conduct surveys early, predict gaps, and recommend job, role, and/or organization redesigns, along with focused coaching, in order to accommodate shortfalls without negatively impacting productivity.

The digitally transformed world of work may require frontline workers to interact with others in the organization they’ve never before dealt directly with. Consider an approach that combines coaching and role-playing games that workers participate in and then discuss. Live and online games should be designed to encourage participants to practice new mindsets in order to earn rewards or recognition in a risk-free environment.

Having access to better information using digitally transformed platforms may dictate that middle managers must now share that information to aid the organization with more rapid decision-making. Collaboration can aid in creativity, produce better ideas, and yield better results. Use of collaboration sites by communities of practice encourages managers to query one another and their Super Users for best practices, to post their lessons learned, and in the process, to raise the collective level of digital literacy.

Summary of key concepts we addressed in this blog post:

  • The benefits of workplace agility
  • Marking and measuring commitment
  • Coaching & collaboration

You know that your people are your most important assets. So, what will you do to address the learning styles, preferences and challenges of your diverse workforce?

We hope you found this discussion helpful, and we invite you to join the conversation by leaving your comments below. Take a look at the graphic below to find out how digital transformation is also affecting real people.

Stay tuned for the next installment of this multi-part series, where we will present strategies and tools to reach the various generations in the workplace.

digital transformation

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Ellen Kumar

Ms. Kumar is a Solution Architect with GP Strategies, and has served in roles ranging from Account Executive, to Operations Director, to Project Manager/Training Consultant. Prior to GP Strategies, she worked for University of Dayton Research Institute and GE Aircraft Engines (now GE Aerospace). She holds an M.S. in Materials Science & Engineering from University of Dayton.

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