It’s human nature to be afraid, unsure of how digital transformation (Dx) fits in our analog lives. We project our fear onto the Dx before us and instead of leveraging its potential, we make small, incremental changes to our processes and our products, while keeping an arm’s length away from the scary new technology threatening our lives and our livelihood.
The extent to which Dx will replace jobs performed by humans is unclear, but it is clear that Dx is changing the way we work. To alleviate the mounting anxiety, leaders must create a clearly defined strategy to harmonize their new workforce.
Develop your duel strategy
- Without a thoughtful duel agenda (digital and human) any strategy you deploy will be one-sided and fail
- We no longer live in a world where human skills out-power digital capabilities; the two go hand in hand
- There is a lot of hype around Dx, its potential and its fail points
- The capabilities Dx offers are not one-size fits all
- Spend the time developing expectations for your organization; otherwise it won’t be the Dx that failed to deliver, it will be you
- Customers are demanding new solutions to ease their daily activities, provide insights, and drive decision making for the future
- Your Dx strategy should be built with this in mind as demand increases for solutions which provide a ‘when I want it, where I want and how I want’ product
- Dx is hyped for its external implications to your organizations stakeholders and customers, however it’s also about creating a more engaging work environment for your Human talent
- When implemented properly, Dx will free up time spent on menial tasks while also creating flexibility for people to work when, where and how they want to deliver the most desirable business outcomes
- You have to understand the “why” of your Dx initiatives
- And your people won’t buy-in to the “why” of your Dx initiatives unless they understand the “why”!
- Naysayers have the potential to pull your strategy offline, sabotaging your efforts
- Dedicate the time necessary to uncover the motives and drivers of others
- Use this information to your advantage as you set your strategy and communicate milestones
- Engage them in defining the future, empower them to make incremental improvements, and work alongside them to create disruptive advancements, forever changing the trajectory of your industry
Exploit the softer side
- DX is specifically designed to understand and learn the technical aspect of any profession
- However, it falls on its proverbial face when presented with the concept of uncertainty
- Human talents such as navigating change, creative thinking, visualizing the future and empathy are not yet matched by any Dx initiative
- Dx played a large role in reducing the concept of ‘jobs for life’
- Leaders today must cultivate a culture of learning, ensuring employees have new and creative opportunities to advance their skills, creating a liquid workforce allowing employees to learn, flex and evolve
- Create and communicate the future organization; including leadership, accountability, span of control, inputs, information flow and capacity planning
- As you develop your future organization, you should find that your most valuable assets (your people) will be redirected to higher value workstreams
- This clarity will help to align your Human talent with your Dx efforts, giving all stakeholders an understanding of their position within the new organization, reducing questions and unrest
We are at the tipping point of unleashing the formidable power of a harmonized Dx and Human workforce. It is up to the Humans in this equation to embrace change and optimize the power of the new workforce.
Author: Cindy Gallagher