Only a third of leaders believe a major barrier to digital effectiveness is culture. The other third changed their approach early on and have reaped significant rewards, including faster results, attraction and retention of better talent, and appreciable growth.
A healthy digital culture can unlock new sources of economic value but it takes more than technology alone to make it happen. To avoid digital transformation failure, senior leaders, including CEOs, must learn to create strong digital cultures that focus on people and technologies.
What is a Digital Culture?
In simple terms, company culture is the set of values and behaviors that determine how your organization functions. A digital culture focuses on customers, products, and services as well as how to power core operations with technologies. Building this type of culture requires transitioning from traditional ways of working and creating environments that support dramatic change while still achieving organizational strategies and goals.
How Does a Digital Culture Impact Business Success?
To understand why you must foster a digital culture in your organization, you need only look at the benefits of doing so.
- Work happens faster. When hierarchy levels are replaced by allowing employees to make quick decisions, work and results naturally speed up. This approach is contrary to how many organizations still operate, but it’s key to a successful digital transformation.
- Encourage innovation. Whether it’s reimagining old models or coming up with new ideas, a digital culture motivates employees to get more creative and try new things.
- Attracts quality talent and improves retention. Younger employees no longer want to work inside traditional models. GenZs and Millennials are rejecting 9 to 5 routines and demanding more autonomy. Establishing a digital culture that redefines the workplace allows you to attract and retain the best talent.
When employees feel they can bring their best self to the workplace, freely voice their opinions, and believe they’re making a real impact, employee engagement and productivity increase—a win-win for your bottom line.
Steps to Foster a Digital Culture
It’s said in a digital world, not taking risks is one of the biggest risks of all. Does that mean your organization should take just any risk? No, but it does mean changing company culture to embrace taking chances and supporting experimentation. Prioritizing these three steps is a good start.
- Support from the top. Digital transformation needs active C-suite support. Companies with the resources should put a chief digital officer in charge of the organization’s digital transformation. Companies who lack the necessary resources should consider outsourcing the responsibility.
- Remove silos. Ivory towers and moated departments inhibit interaction and collaboration. A digital culture relinquishes these old models and creates cross-functional teams that are non-hierarchical and empowered to execute projects autonomously.
- Overcome risk aversion. Organizations unwilling to concede technologies alone are not the way to a successful digital transformation are the ones who stand to lose the most. Leadership and employees must be open to bold, aka risky initiatives.
The Road to Cultural Transformation
Cultural change is the key to a successful digital transformation, and it must be fostered from the top down. By helping you embed a digital culture that leads to long-term, sustainable performance, an experienced IT managed services provider can help your organization secure the competitive edge you’re looking for.