This week I was privileged enough to hear from some of the brightest minds in tech, at the annual Disruption Summit. With leaders from the likes of LEGO, Vodafone and even the Ministry of Justice, the event was packed full of – you got it – disruptors telling their stories of organisational change.
We even got a sneak preview into tomorrow’s tech landscape – featuring the use of DNA as a data storage platform and real-life avatars performing complex processes (think emergency operations conducted remotely by a robot on the other side of the country, carried out by a specialist – oddly not a million miles from James Cameron’s sci-fi epic).
While I obviously love any shiny new examples of tech in action, Frazer Bennett, chief innovation officer at PA Consulting, took a slightly alternative stance - delivering his keynote addressing the shift-change required from leaders in order to build an organisation that can pivot and move with shifting landscapes. “Build your organisation on the foundation of sand, rather than concrete,” he said. “You need to be agile, not reliant on old structures.”
Bennett talked through four forces affecting consumers today: Respect for social impact, trust and transparency, difference and harnessing new technology for all. To foster an organisational culture that’s set up for success, we must have an appreciation for each of these factors, embracing their values, he said. Deploying new technology alone won’t underpin such a required cultural shift. We need to change the way with think, and then use technology to apply this in context.
Communicating such values is equally critical. With customers able to respond, critique – and support let’s not forget – your efforts in real-time, ensuring these moves align with your organisation’s purpose is key. Deploying new technology enables the creation of new and improved business models and an opportunity to reimagine organisational values. As Frazer Bennett said, “building this type of organisation is now an obligation, not an option.”
Want to find out more? Hotwire has recently launched three dedicated eBooks discussing privacy, purpose and personalisation – with the purpose edition especially relevant here. Or if you’d rather, drop me a line.
It has become clear that simply ‘doing digital transformation’ is missing the point. Businesses need to actually be transformative. They need to change not just the technologies and business models they are using, but also their culture, and the way in which they integrate the purpose which underlies all their activities and contributes enormously to their success.