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Company Culture and Collaboration Determines Digital Transformation

/ by Vanessa Kirchner-Leida

Teams Siloed Collaboration Digital Transformation

  • Peter Drucker coined the term, "Culture eats strategy for breakfast." This is important to remember when you create your digital transformation strategy.
  • In order to attain your business objectives and the return on investment you projected, you must take a culture-first approach and support it with the right collaboration technologies and IT adoption services.

Five components comprise company culture: attitudes, behaviors, relationships, values, and environment. It’s only when they align with your business strategy and enable each other that successful change can take place. This isn’t easy to do and takes a lot of effort. You need to ensure that whatever digital transformation strategy you create, your company culture supports it wholeheartedly.

In 2006 Peter Drucker, known as the founder of modern management and one of the most influential business thinkers of our time, coined the phrase, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” With digital transformation at the forefront of business today, his adage still holds true. If you don’t take a culture-first approach to the change you lead, it will inevitably fail.

Cultural Resistance and Lack of Collaboration Impede Digital Transformation

If you read Gartner’s research on Six Barriers to Becoming a Digital Business, it’s evident how Drucker’s saying still holds its weight in spades today. Gartner’s findings conclude that the top two barriers are 1) a change-resisting culture and 2) limited sharing and collaboration. To succeed in digital transformation, everyone in your company must embrace the change. And leaders need to champion it by explaining the opportunities those changes will bring.

[Read: Overcoming Resistance to Technological in a Legacy Media Environment]

You also need to establish cross-functional teams that are willing to share their professional knowledge when they work together. This type of collaboration may not be intuitive to employees. The natural tendency is for employees to guard information creating a more hierarchical or siloed approach with clear boundaries between areas of responsibilities.

Eight Ways to Lead Organizational Change

So how do you begin? John Kotter, best-selling author and Harvard Business School professor, outlines eight useful steps to promote any type of organizational change in his classic book, Leading Change. They include:

  • Create a sense of urgency
  • Build a guiding coalition
  • Form a strategic vision and initiatives
  • Enlist a volunteer army
  • Enable action by removing barriers
  • Generate short-term wins
  • Sustain acceleration
  • Institute change


Collaboration Technology Points the Way

Another way to break down barriers to digital transformation is to support better collaboration through technologies that serve today’s modern workforce. Gone are the days when a team gathers together face-to-face in the company’s conference room. Now team members are scattered in different locations. They expect easy-to-use collaboration tools to connect one another as if they were still side-by-side in the same room.

Leading-edge technologies such as video conferencing, messaging, and screen sharing make it possible to work from anywhere, with anyone, using any device. Teams now visually engage with one another effortlessly even when apart. It makes them more agile, more productive, and goes a long way to empower their ideas.

Adoption, Adoption, Adoption

But just because “you have built it, it doesn’t mean they will come.” You can’t forget the human side of the collaboration equation. All too often your IT team will spend a lot of time carefully selecting a new technology, creating a detailed implementation strategy, and integrating the solution into the IT environment, only to find that months later—to their chagrin—it still isn’t being used effectively.

Assuming your organization' teams will use new technology, isn’t enough. They need thorough training to make the most out of the IT investment. You need to ensure that your organization’s teams not only put the technology to good use but also understand how to use it to its full potential. Otherwise, your collaboration efforts will fall flat and so will your ROI.

Lean on an IT Collaboration Services Provider to Help You Work Better

This is where IT adoption services comes in. When you lean on a provider, you get their experience and expertise to make sure your organizational teams embrace your new collaboration technology baby with open arms. A good adoption services provider will help you create a plan for achieving maximum effectiveness and will help you implement it. They can also assist in mapping technology features to specific business challenges, train end users, and analyze results. They can even help you maintain the technology to guarantee it continues to run smoothly.

You’ve put in the time in selecting, integrating, and deploying a new collaboration technology. Wouldn’t it be a shame to let it go to waste because of lack of adoption?

Digital Transformation Ain’t Easy

Leading digital transformation isn’t easy. Changing a cultural mindset isn’t a cakewalk either. But you’ll reap the benefits of digital business if you take a culture-first approach and support it with the right collaboration technologies and adoption services.

Read our free eBook to learn how your organization can overcome resistance to technological change today!

EBook Overcoming Resistance to Technological Change in a Legacy Media Environment

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